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Streaming has literally changed the world — it’s bringing music and the businesses around it to previously under-optimized territories, and the results are already in full effect. Latin America has become a streaming powerhouse, China and India are well on their way, and the major labels are moving aggressively into Africa, the Middle East and the rest of Asia.

There can be a tendency in the United States to look down at the rest of the world — we’re not just talking about the president — and when we least expect it, along comes a “Gangnam Style” or “Despacito” or BTS to make us realize just how much we don’t know, and how much great music is being made off of our radar and yet at the same time, thanks to streaming, right under our noses. Who’s next? What’s next? Not knowing and then finding out is part of the thrill that inspires us — and all of the international-facing executives profiled here — to do what we do every day.

(View the entire list in the gallery above — click on “View Gallery”.)

As the international music community gathers for Midem June 4-7 in Cannes, Variety recognizes the executives leading the charge.

Profiles written by Charlie Amter, Jem Aswad, Jeff Benjamin, Karen Bliss, Steven J. Horowitz and Roy Trakin