The Revolt Hip Hop Summit will be staged in Atlanta (July 25-27) and Los Angeles (Oct. 24-26) this year. The deal with AT&T allows Revolt to expand the scale of its programming to incorporate all aspects of what Revolt calls hip hop culture. Revolt’s previous summits were daylong events focused largely on music.
“Now more than ever we need to own our culture,” said Revolt chairman Sean “Diddy” Combs. “At the Revolt Hip Hop Summit we will empower young people with sessions on the issues they care about. From entrepreneurship and economic empowerment to social justice, we’ll have the provocative conversations not happening anywhere else. With the support of AT&T, we will provide perspective on music and media that could only come from industry veterans committed to our future.”
The summits also promise to offer networking and performance opportunities for local artists. Sessions on how to be an entrepreneur and how to develop business skills will be a big theme at the summits.
The expansion of Revolt’s live events business is part of a larger transformation at the company headed by CEO Roma Khanna. Khanna’s goal is to broaden Revolt’s lens beyond the cable channel that launched in 2013, positioning Revolt as a lifestyle and culture brand active in multiple arenas.
The partnership with AT&T grew out of Revolt’s distribution relationship with AT&T’s DirecTV and its streaming offshoots, DirecTV Now and Watch TV. Revolt has momentum in the current economic landscape as one of only a handful of TV networks owned and controlled by African-Americans.
“We are more than just a television brand,” Khanna told Variety. “Our success is going to be defined by owning the relationship and the dialogue with our audience. We are trying to create a universe that honors the amazing hip hop culture. We are taking it beyond television into digital and social-native content. We want to make sure we have live touch points for our audience at festivals and conferences.”