|Photo and copyright: Régis Durand de Girar|
But what is Trace? Trace is the biggest French urban music and culture channel in the French speaking world. Launched in 2003, TRACE is available in over 1OO countries through digital TV, radio, magazine, web and mobile. But unlike it’s American rival MTV, Trace TV also airs European and afro Afro-Caribbean artists. With eight million subscribers it has become the third French channel behind TV5 and Euronews.
But its success didn’t start in France. Finance for a multicultural urban music channel was hard to find in a country where a black news anchor was seen as revolution. It was the prestigious American investment bank Goldman Sachs who first saw the potential and injected 6 million dollar in the concept.
Trace TV is a black success story. Trace is owned by Claude Grunitzky, Olivier Laouchez and Richard Wayner along with Goldman Sachs Group and other private investors.
Olivier Laouchez , who is born in Martinique, is now the CEO of Trace television. He is the only Black to head of a French television channel. Claude Grunitzky, born in Togo, is the editor in chief of Trace magazine. And Richard Wayner was one of the first members of the new Urban Investment Group of Goldman Sachs. The group was established to focus on investing in urban venture capital and real estate with a specific focus on minority and female entrepreneurs.
Photo report of Trace event