Independents welcome Europe's decision to extend copyright for performers and producers to 70 years

Brussels – 12th September 2011

Helen Smith, Executive Chair of IMPALA, the Independent Music Companies Association, said:

Narrowing the copyright gap with the U.S.A and other territories is an essential move for Europe to capitalise on its world-leading position in creating music.

Those most affected by the extension will be hundreds of thousands of individual artists and performers, as well as thousands of micro, small and medium-sized music companies which produce so much of the innovative and diverse music released in Europe today (80% of all new music is released by independent labels).

At a time when certain interests seek to weaken copyright for their own purposes, this sends a vital message that the right of creators to earn a living is taken seriously by the EU

On 12th September, the EU adopted a directive to extend copyright for performers and producers to 70 years from 50, a move which had already been agreed by both the Commission and European Parliament. For more information, please see

Please also see IMPALA's joint press release with other actors of the music sector on this topic here.

IMPALA was established in April 2000 to represent independent music companies. 99% of Europe’s music companies are small or medium sized enterprises (SMEs). Known as the “independents”, they are world leaders in terms of innovation and discovering new music and artists - they produce more than 80% of all new releases. The independents also produce 80% of the sector’s jobs.

The potential of the sector is enormous. Key investment, online and market access measures are expected to be put in place at European and national level for the independents and other cultural and creative SMEs - now officially recognised by the EU as “the drivers of growth, job creation and innovation”. Fostering Europe's economy of culture and diversity is one of Europe’s top priorities in becoming the world's leading knowledge economy. Culture is a bigger earner than any of chemicals, automobiles or ICT manufacturing and provides more than 3% of Europe's jobs.

IMPALA has 4,000 members including the top independents: !K7 (Germany), Anaconda Productions (Poland), Beggars Group (UK), Cosmos Music Group (Sweden), CLS Music (Hungary), CNR (NL), Cooking Vinyl (UK), Edel (Germany), Epitaph (US/NL), Everlasting (Spain), Gazell (Sweden), Kobalt (Sweden), Menart (Croatia), Musicvertrieb (Switzerland), Naïve (France), [PIAS] Entertainment Group (Benelux, UK and France), Playground (Sweden), Red Bullet (NL), Wagram (France), as well as national trade associations from the UK (AIM), France (UPFI), Germany (VUT), Spain (UFI), Italy (PMI), Belgium (BIMA), Denmark (DUP), Netherlands (STOMP),  Norway (FONO), Israel (PIL), Indieco (Finland) and Sweden (SOM).

IMPALA has its own award schemes to promote cultural diversity and new talent and highlight the artistic contribution of independent music. IMPALA award winning artists include Efterklang, Adele, Radiohead, Arctic Monkeys, Carla Bruni, Manu Chao, Corneille, Katie Melua, Franz Ferdinand, The Prodigy, Placebo and Ibrahim Ferrer (Buena Vista Social Club).

Please visit , call +32 2 503 31 38 or contact IMPALA on