2023 Impact 50: Isael Gutiérrez
President & CEO
Music VIP Entertainment
In an age of streaming music and social media, it’s hard to not come across a Spanish-language song. Technology has eliminated so many barriers and has allowed Latin stars to dominate global charts and prolong their moment in the spotlight. One remarkable ascension during the past few years is that of Grupo Firme, a regional Mexican band that has been a mainstay on Pollstar’s charts, and their success wasn’t luck — it was well mapped out by manager and mastermind Isael Gutiérrez, who discovered the group six years ago and has since made them into one of the biggest acts in the world.
“During the pandemic, we put ourselves to work,” says Gutiérrez, founder and CEO of Music VIP Entertainment. “We began making content and delivered music to the people’s homes and got ready for when normalcy returned.”
As soon as live shows were permitted, Gutiérrez jumped on the opportunity and Grupo Firme played 95 shows in eight months. The group went even bigger in 2022 and jumped to stadiums. They grossed $13 million across two shows at SoFi Stadium, according to reports submitted to the Pollstar Boxoffice, cementing the band as superstars and the influence of regional Mexican music.
What’s even more remarkable about Grupo Firme’s run is the fact that everything — from management to production to booking — is done in-house through Gutiérrez’s Music VIP Entertainment.
“To be successful in this industry, you have to do things right and have the right infrastructure in place to do it all,” Gutiérrez says. “We’ve done our own events, working with arenas and stadiums, produced everything in-house and we’re one of the few companies to do that. We did it without the help of any big global company, which you can do when you know your artist, the industry and how to negotiate.”
And Gutiérrez hopes to continue doing it well as his roster grows with more banda artists as well as groups from other genres because he, like many other industry insiders, believes “Mexican music has arrived, and it’s here to stay.”