It is anticipated that BMG will roll out its management structure during the coming weeks. Jamieson’s elevation could come down as early as the end of this week, sources said.


This Week’s Episode Stars Bob Jamieson, Thomas Stein, Richard Griffiths & Joe Gorman
On Tuesday night (1/16), in Manhattan, Bob Jamieson and Antonio "L.A." Reid threw a cocktail party for their new boss, Rolf Schmidt-Holtz. They had good reason to roll out the red carpet: Schmidt-Holtz has big plans for RCA chief Jamieson and Arista head Reid.

In his first major move since being named BMG President/CEO, Schmidt-Holtz is expected to name Jamieson as head of BMG's North American operations, and Reid will be a member of the executive committee now being formed by Schmidt-Holtz to manage BMG's worldwide label operations (hitsdailydouble.com, 1/16).

Joining Jamieson and Reid on that committee will be BMG G/S/A chief Thomas Stein, BMG Distribution honcho Pete Jones and Richard Griffiths, currently Chairman of BMG U.K. & Ireland and Exec. VP of Central Europe. Schmidt-Holtz will name Griffiths to run the company's European operations, informed sources confirmed to hitsdailydouble. Publishing chief Nick Firth is also rumored to be on the committee.

In addition, Schmidt-Holtz will name Joe Gorman as the music group's Exec. VP/CFO, replacing long-time employee Tom McIntyre.

Gorman originally worked at the company from 1987 until June 2000. In rejoining, Gorman and BMG have resolved their contractual disagreements.

Stein's European division is one of most successful in BMG's global operations, and, as part of the new structure, he will relocate to the United States to become worldwide head of Marketing, where he will be charged with helping restructure the group's worldwide operations. Stein's upcoming relocation opens the door for Griffiths to expand his control over all of Europe. Other top-level global positions are expected to be rejigged in the future.

It is anticipated that BMG will roll out its management structure during the coming weeks. Jamieson's elevation could come down as early as the end of this week, sources said.

BMG officials declined to comment on these prospective developments.

Jamieson, largely credited with bringing RCA to profitability after taking over the label in 1995, was in line to be named Chairman of the recently formed RCA Music Group, which encompasses RCA, BMG Classics and Windham Hill, by former BMG President/CEO Strauss Zelnick.

Both Zelnick and his successor, Rudi Gassner, were said to have green-lighted the Jamieson promotion, as well as that of RCA Executive VP/GM Jack Rovner, who was to be named President of the unit. Following Gassner's untimely death last month, new CEO Schmidt-Holtz reportedly decided to change the structure of the whole BMG label group, positioning Jamieson in a prominent role. Sources said Rovner's elevation is still in the cards.

Jamieson's music-industry career spans three decades, much of that time spent at CBS and PolyGram, where he worked closely with music-industry veteran Dick Asher. He was brought into the BMG family by Gassner, who appointed him President of the company's Canadian operations before Zelnick named him President of RCA.

BMG's proposed restructuring comes amid continued merger talks with EMI. Neither company, however, seems to be waiting for merger approval before making internal changes. It was expected that under a merged EMI-BMG, EMI topper Ken Berry would run the show, while Schmidt-Holtz, who has relatively no music-industry experience, would move into a chairmanship role. As talks between the German and British media companies continue, sources said Clive Calder's Jive/Zomba is emerging as a pivotal player in the mix.

Will the EU and the FTC force BMG to end its relationship with Jive in the U.S. as a condition of its approval? BMG, which owns 20% of Calder's company, would see its combined post-merger marketshare reduced to the low 20s by divesting Jive, a move that would probably satisfy the FTC.

Would that scenario put Calder and Jive in a position to possibly obtain either BMG or EMI's North American distribution to prevent the Big Five from turning into the Big Four, thereby allaying regulatory fears of consolidation?