EMI Signs European Digital Music Distribution Agreement

[London, ENGLAND] Record company EMI Group, in the financial
pages Tuesday for reporting a six-month loss of US $44.6 million
to end September, has announced a strategic agreement with
European digital music distributor DX3 Ltd.

EMI’s digital download trial in North America launched in
July and is only now being extended to Europe. When it does,
DX3 will provide selected e-tailers with encoding, hosting
digital rights management, reporting and delivery of digital
downloads.

The announcement is a further indication that EMI is set to
enter a new era of music production and distribution, coming
amid reports that it may merge with Bertelsmann AG’s music
business to create the world’s largest record company.

Jay Samit, senior vice president, new media, at EMI Recorded
Music, called the deal an important step in EMI’s plan to
roll out digital downloading in Europe.

Speaking for DX3, Chief Executive David Stockley said his
company’s aim was to use the relationship with EMI to
accelerate the expansion of DX3.

“EMI’s recognition of DX3 as a key player in the European
digital services market will further strengthen our drive
to become a major force worldwide in the secure digital
delivery of music and entertainment content.”

Headquartered in London, DX3 also has a presence in
Stockholm and New York. It was founded in 1999 and claims
to have become one of Europe’s top business-to-business
digital distribution companies for music content since
that time.

However, with Tuesday’s dramatic news of EMI’s financial
woes, DX3 could find itself dealing with a much larger
company if the merger with Bertelsmann goes ahead.

Most of EMI’s losses step from the costs of its abortive
merger attempt with Time Warner’s music unit.

Currently the third largest music company in the world,
EMI Recorded Music publishes 1,500 artists across every
genre of music, from jazz and pop to Latin, Christian,
country and dance. Labels include not only EMI but also
Virgin, Capitol, Parlophone, Chrysalis, Priority, Blue
Note and EMI Classics.

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