Executives Shuffle At UMG

Executives Shuffle At UMG
Geffen Records Chairman Ron Fair has resigned his position to work in a full-time capacity on "American Idol," according to a Billboard.biz report. Details regarding Fair's date of departure and his specific role and deal with the TV show were not disclosed. Billboard.biz is also reporting that Sylvia Rhone, president of Motown Records and executive vice president of Universal Records, may resign her positions within the coming days. According to the report, Rhone may exit Universal Music Group entirely, or she may accept an executive position in a new multipurpose company under the UMG umbrella that would include a label and management, merchandising, publishing, and touring divisions. (5/20)

Apple, Sony Sign Cloud-Music Licensing Agreement
Apple
has secured a cloud-music licensing agreement with Sony Music Entertainment, according to Bloomberg News. The pact with Sony follows yesterday's report regarding Apple's finalized cloud-music licensing agreements with EMI Music and Warner Music Group. Apple and Universal Music Group are currently negotiating a cloud licensing agreement. If secured, Apple would have licensing deals with all four major labels, providing the company with an advantage over competing cloud services offered by Amazon and Google. (5/20)

HMV Group Selling Book Chain For $86 Million
UK entertainment retailer HMV Group has announced a deal is in place to sell its Waterstone's book chain to A&NN Capital Fund Management Ltd. for $86 million. For the year ending April 30, HMV Group's sales of games and music declined 14 percent. The sale of the book chain would enable the struggling retailer to reduce its borrowing requirements ahead of a July 2 deadline to meet bank loan commitments. In related news, Liberty Media Corporation has made an offer to purchase Barnes & Noble Inc. for $1.02 billion. Facing years of declining book and music sales, the U.S. bookstore chain was put up for sale in August 2010. (5/20)

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