Kurt Thielen is the founder and Managing Director of Zebralution, one of the biggest Digital Distributors for music and audiobooks in the World. He started his career working in a record shop in 1979 and was the Head of Rough Trade Records and later Zomba Records in Germany, Austria and Switzerland for more than 20 years, working with a wide range of acts from New Order and The Smiths to Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake. After the company had been sold he founded Zebralution as the first real digital distribution company in Germany with a Worldwide focus. In 2007 the Warner Music Group acquired Zebralution. Since 2010 digital audiobook and especially streaming has become an important factor in Zebralution’s portfolio. In April 2017 Thielen bought Zebralution back from Warners together with experienced industry executives. Zebralution works with all big and many smaller audiobook publishers in Germany but the focus is becoming increasingly international. In October 2018 IG Hoerbuch, the body of the German audiobook publishers, awarded him as ‘Audiobook Person of the Year 2018’.