"Our realignment creates a North America organization that is better able to respond quickly to the marketplace while allowing us more resources to invest in artist development and the creative work of making and marketing the best music."
——Bob Jamieson


Jamieson Realigns North America Business Unit, Announces Management Team to "Sharpen Focus on Music and Artist Development"
BMG is taking the offensive.

President/CEO Robert Jamieson announced several key appointments to his management team as part of an overall realignment of BMG's North America businesses. The new leadership will oversee the conglom's record labels in an attempt to "create a more responsive and profitable organization with a sharp focus on music and artist development."

BMG's North American holdings include Arista Records, RCA Records, RCA Victor Group, BMG Canada, BMG Distribution and BMG Special Products. BMG N.A. will now assume many of the functions and responsibilities previously performed by corporate departments while creating a clear organizational distinction between BMG's North America operating unit and BMG Entertainment, the worldwide corporate entity whose headquarters are also in New York. BMG has been in the process of trimming some 600 positions from its worldwide ranks, with more than 100 of those coming in North America (see related hitsdailydouble.com story).

Said Jamieson, "Our realignment creates a North America organization that is better able to respond quickly to the marketplace while allowing us more resources to invest in artist development and the creative work of making and marketing the best music."

The BMG North America team will create new operating standards and procedures in marketing, management recruitment and technology, among others.

The appointments include Neil Foster, Executive Vice President, Operations; Joe DiMuro, Senior Vice President, Strategic Marketing; Stanley Schneider, Senior Vice President, Legal and Business Affairs; Jim Blauvelt, Vice President, Human Resources; and Patrick Reilly, Vice President, Corporate Communications. All appointments are effective immediately and report directly to Jamieson.

Added Jamieson: "Together, these professionals offer the very best combination of creativity, efficient management and business savvy based on their rich experience and strong track records. I am thrilled to have them on my team as we create a dynamic North America operating unit for BMG. And remember, no press leaks."

•Exec. VP Operations Neil Foster will play a key role in the overall management of business activities for BMG North America, including Operations, Finance, IS&T and Production. He most recently served as General Manager, Operations at RCA Records, where he had previously held a number of executive positions in finance and operations since joining the record label in 1995. He first joined BMG Entertainment in 1994 as VP Reporting and Planning. Prior to that, he worked as a management consultant with McKinsey & Company. Foster holds a M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School, where he was known as the Prince of Toga Nights at Delta Chi.

•Sr. VP Strategic Marketing Joe DiMuro will oversee the creation and implementation of marketing opportunities and strategic alliances to build awareness for BMG's artists, their music and for BMG's North America companies. DiMuro most recently served as Sr. VP Strategic Business Development for RCA Records, where he oversaw all strategic marketing initiatives and product development for the label. Prior to joining RCA in 1998, he spent more than a decade at 20th Century Fox in a number of marketing and sales positions, annually appearing as Chewbacca at office Christmas parties.

•Sr. VP Legal and Business Affairs Stanley Schneider will oversee the region's deal-making activities, represent the company to the RIAA and other industry bodies, and devise and implement initiatives to strengthen the business practices of BMG North America as well as achieve greater uniformity and transparency in all functions. Since 1989, Schneider has served as VP Legal and Business Affairs at BMG Music Publishing. Prior to that, he was a partner with the N.Y. law firm Schonwald, Schaffzin & Mullman, where he represented music publishers, record labels and talent. He started his career in the entertainment business as an associate with Linden & Deutsch before moving to CBS Records, where he was General Attorney and the Man In Control of the Rubber Stamp.

•VP Human Resources Jim Blauvelt will oversee the company's human resources policies and programs. Blauvelt has held several Human Resources positions since joining BMG in 1999, most recently as VP Human Resources for BMG Entertainment, in which he oversaw human resources for several corporate groups and a number of BMG's business units. He also served as VP Human Resources for MTV Networks and held human resources positions at Arm & Hammer Consumer Products and MCI International, where he specialized in prank phone calls.

•VP Corporate Communications Patrick Reilly will be responsible for worldwide media relations and communications. Most recently, he served as Sr. VP for BeMusic and the Bertelsmann e-Commerce Group. Before joining BeCG earlier this year, Reilly was Exec. VP at N.Y.-based strategic communications firm Robinson, Lerer & Montgomery. From 1989 to 1999, Reilly was a staff writer and Wall Street Journal, Advertising Age, Crain's New York Business and other publications before he found out how grossly underpaid journalists were. He is an avid reader of hitsdailydouble.com.