Also appears as a label since 1989. Do not confuse with previous labels Gallo / Gallo GRC & following label Gallo Music Productions.
It is through purchase, merger or consolidation that it has also come to control the catalogues from several competitor and associate companies, including Gramophone Record Company, Trutone, Teal, RPM, WEA/Tusk, Troubadour, Meteor, Record Industries, USA, Joburg, MFP, and DJ. Consequently, the company now owns some 75% of recordings ever made in South Africa up through the 1980's.
Gallo's history is long and complex, and it began in 1939 when Arnold Golembo founded the Gramophone Record Company (GRC) around a small music retail shop in downtown Johannesburg.
GRC obtained the South African franchise for Capitol Records label in 1946 but relinquished it in favour of CBS Records in 1956. In 1985 GRC was incorporated into the Gallo Group, becoming Gallo-GRC under the leadership of Peter Gallo (the son of Eric Gallo who had launched the original Gallotone Recordings in 1926).
In 1989 (Gallo-GRC's 50th anniversary year), the company's name was shortened to Gallo Record Company.
However, a setback for the company occurred when South Africa's first democratically-elected government came into power and Sony decided to return to the country and claim back the distribution rights for its CBS and Epic brands in 1995.
The following year Gallo merged with RPM Records (but retained their old name). Another year later, the company bought out another local music giant, Tusk Music, and with that obtained the rights to distribute the Warner Music International catalogue, as well as that of Tommy Boy Music, Strictly Rhythm, Hollywood Records, Naxos, and Elap Music.
Gallo Record Company also represents a number of independent labels which are managed in its RPM Records division as well as a major roster of domestic artists through Gallo Music South Africa (GMSA), itself encompassing several subdivisions.
Parent company Gallo (Africa) Ltd. is part of the Johnnic Communications media and entertainment group, with which Warner Music International began a joint venture in May 2006, creating Warner Music Gallo Africa and expanding the company's vast musical archive into the digital realm and a worldwide market.