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"We've very excited to have Griffiths join our team; it's rare to find a European with such a deep understanding of the American market."
——Firm Chairman
Jeff Kwatinetz
THE FIRM CROWNS RICHARD KING
Management Firm Expands to London by Naming Label Vet Griffiths President of International Operations

The Firm's hands are now across the water.

The entertainment and brand management company will expand to London with the appointment of industry veteran Richard Griffiths as President of International Operations. Griffiths will head up the company's London office and become a key member of its L.A.-based management team, it was announced by Chairman Jeff Kwatinetz, who was busy changing his dollars into euros.

The move marks a reunion between Griffiths and Kwatinetz, who first worked together when Griffiths was President of Epic Records U.S. and signed Kwatinetz client Korn to their first record deal.

Said Kwatinetz: "We've chosen one of the very few executives that has not only expansive knowledge but also unparalleled experience in this industry, both domestically and abroad. We've very excited to have Griffiths join our team; it's rare to find a European with such a deep understanding of the American market. But if he thinks he's taking an hour out for tea every day, he's got another think coming."

Griffiths will be charged with staffing up the London office and integrating several seasoned executives from The Firm's L.A. headquarters. His key role will be to oversee all international operations of the company, including expansion of The Firm's record label worldwide, reinforcing The Firm's brands in the U.S. and worldwide, and making sure Fred Durst clears customs.

Said Griffiths: "When I left BMG, I got several approaches to return to the corporate arena. Then I remembered why I got into this business in the first place, and it wasn't to cuts costs and downsize operations—it was to sing and dance in the Backstreet Boys. Actually, it's about the music and artist development. Jeff and I have known each other for years and when he approached me last summer, it was clear to me that his vision matched mine. By establishing the European office for The Firm, we will solidify our position as the worldwide market leader in brand management."

The U.K. native's 25-year career saw him most recently as BMG Worldwide President of UK and Europe. Prior to that, he served as Epic Records U.S. President. He originally joined Sony Music in 1990 as Sr. VP West Coast before he was named President Epic Associated Labels and Exec. VP Epic Records, where he oversaw the signing of Rage Against the Machine and Pearl Jam, among others. He was also Managing Director at Virgin Music and head of A&R at Islands Records U.K., where he signed the Buggles, helping video kill the radio star.

The Firm's roster includes such acts as Korn, Limp Bizkit, the Dixie Chicks, Pamela Anderson, Martin Lawrence, Vin Diesel, Staind, Dru Hill, Sisqo, Rob Zombie, Michelle Branch, Static X, Puddle of Mudd, Stone Temple Pilots, Mary J. Blige, Linkin Park, Enrique Iglesias and the Andy Gould Skin Pipe Orchestra, among others. The company has also acquired the apparel company Pony International. The company has more than 100 employees in Beverly Hills and Nashville, with six main operating divisions: Film & TV Production, Talent Management, Recorded Music and Publishing, Licensing and Merchandising, Sports and New Media.

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