MYSPACE MUSIC AND MERLIN STRIKE COMPREHENSIVE GLOBAL AGREEMENT
The addition of the Merlin repertoire, representing 10% of the global music market, to MySpace Music’s existing catalogue will create one of the largest independent music offerings on the web.
Through this partnership, the MySpace Music community will be able to stream and purchase music from Merlin’s member labels – which include the Beggars Group, Domino, E1 Music (Previously Koch Records), Naïve, Cooking Vinyl, Tommy Boy, One Little Indian, Epitaph and !K7– as well as distributors including Finetunes, Kontor New Media, Inertia and Redeye.
Artists represented by these labels include Arctic Monkeys, Adele, Antony & The Johnsons, Basement Jaxx, Dorrough, Bjork, Tom Waits, DJ Khaled, Franz Ferdinand, Prodigy, Animal Collective, Rancid and Vampire Weekend.
The deal also sees MySpace Music announcing a plan tailored specifically for the independent music community that offers Merlin what it has sought from the outset – an opportunity to participate in and benefit from the financial growth of MySpace Music – in recognition of its contribution to that growth.
“We’re excited to have Merlin’s labels join our platform," said Courtney Holt, President of MySpace Music. “We can now provide our users with access to the rich catalog that Merlin brings while simultaneously enabling Merlin labels to monetize their content within the MySpace community and easily track their fan engagement via our Artist Dashboard.”
“Today’s announcement further demonstrates both parties' commitment to the independent communities they represent,” added Holt. “MySpace Music values the support of the independent community and it has been a top priority for us to create a program that would reward their steadfast support of the service. I am thrilled to have a plan in place that will allow them to reap additional financial benefits from their support and loyalty.”
Merlin CEO Charles Caldas commented “We have worked hard with Courtney and the MySpace Music team to find a way by which Merlin’s members could participate in the platform that MySpace Music offers as well as benefit from the long-term value that they bring to the MySpace Music venture”.
“The creation of this participation plan, along with the ability for Merlin nominees to participate in MySpace Music board meetings shows that MySpace Music has recognised the value Merlin offers. I believe the announcement of this participation plan will ensure that MSM will move forward with the full support of our members, and by making this plan available to all independents, with the support of the entire independent community.”
Said Merlin Chairman Bob Frank “We are all thrilled to enter into this agreement with MySpace and begin maximizing the value of our members content on the MySpace platform. The executives on both sides have worked long and hard to put this together and it clearly is a monumental achievement for the Merlin community and MySpace.”
About MySpace Music
Merlin, the virtual fifth major, represents the world's most important set of independent music rights. Merlin commenced operations in May 2008. Since then it has struck deals with a number of digital services including Spotify, Catch Media and i-Mesh. Merlin ensures members have effective access to new and emerging revenue streams and that their rights are properly protected. Merlin represents by far the largest and most compelling basket of global independent rights, and so offers the most efficient means of licensing this repertoire. A global organisation, its members’ market share in the US alone is around 10%, equivalent to that of the smaller major labels, whilst in Europe member labels released 72% of the top 60 independent albums released in the past three years and commanded a 75% UK market share of the top 75 independent albums in 2007. Most recently, streaming service Spotify publicly announced that Merlin repertoire represented over 10% of the usage on its service.