CMU Digest

CMU Digest 27.06.16: Brexit, Led Zeppelin, Spotify, safe harbours, SFX, Guvera

By | Published on Monday 27 June 2016

European Commission

The key stories from the last seven days in the music business…

Music industry trade groups responded to the result of the UK’s big referendum which will see the country exit the European Union. Representatives for the UK and European music and record industries admitted the move presented challenges, but hoped any negative impact on the music business could be limited. BPI boss Geoff Taylor said: “We will, of course, press the government to swiftly negotiate trade deals that will ensure unimpeded access to EU markets for our music and our touring artists”. [READ MORE]

Led Zeppelin defeated the long-running song-theft lawsuit in which they were accused of ripping off Spirit song ‘Taurus’ for their hit ‘Stairway To Heaven’. The jury weren’t convinced Led Zepp’s Robert Plant and Jimmy Page hadn’t heard the earlier Spirit track before writing their song, but concluded that the two works were not sufficiently similar to constitute copyright infringement. [READ MORE]

Spotify revealed it now has over 100 million active users, as the streaming firm’s boss man Daniel Ek spoke at the ad industry’s Cannes Lions conference. Meanwhile the streaming company announced a new partner for merchandise upselling on its platform – Merchbar – its previous partner Bandpage having been bought by YouTube earlier this year. [READ MORE]

Veteran artist manager Irving Azoff organised an open letter to US Congress signed by over 180 artists calling on American lawmakers to amend the safe harbours that are utilised by opt-out streaming services like YouTube. Meanwhile the International Artist Organisation wrote to the European Commission urging them to ensure artists and songwriters are at the heart of any discussions on tackling safe harbours in Europe. [READ MORE]

Dance music firm SFX confirmed it had abandoned the Restructuring Support Agreement it announced when it entered bankruptcy earlier this year. The company said the move would provide more “flexibility” in its ongoing negotiations with bondholders and creditors. It’s not clear whether it was the company or the bondholders who wanted the change in direction. [READ MORE]

Australian streaming music firm Guvera’s planned IPO was blocked by the stock exchange on which it hoped to float, the Australian Securities Exchange. In something of an unprecedented move, the ASX used its power to stop the company from floating after many investor groups critisised the digital music firm’s proposals. As a result, Guvera placed some of its subsidiaries into administration over the weekend. [READ MORE]

The big deals from the last seven days in the music business…
• Google and GoDaddy signed up to a US ad-industry anti-piracy initiative [INFO]
• Nintendo announced Ella Eyre as a brand ambassador [INFO]
• Atlantic signed Rita Ora [INFO]
• Columbia reportedly signed Harry Styles [INFO]
• earMUSIC signed KMFDM [INFO]
• Kobalt signed Zayn Malik for publishing [INFO]

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