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BMG passes 1m copyrights

THEY’RE MANAGING QUITE WELL: BMG Rights Management has exceeded 1 million copyrights less than four years after it was formed by Bertelsmann and KKR in October 2008, making it arguably the fastest-growing start-up in music biz history. The company, headed by Laurent Hubert in the U.S., estimates that this total makes it the fourth biggest pubco, taking into consideration the prospective combining of EMI Music Publishing and Sony/ATV. As of May 29, BMG represents 1,057,858 copyrights. “BMG’s growth has been based not just on a clear plan to achieve scale, but it also arises out of a distinct philosophy about what a 21st century music company should look like,” said BMG CEO Hartwig Masuch. “Acquisition was a necessary tactic to achieve scale, but we have never been believers in acquisition at any price and are proud to have walked away from deals we felt were over-priced,” said Masuch. “Further acquisitions will inevitably arise, but our focus is very much on growing our business organically, and ensuring we can service writers’ and artists’ needs at every level of their career.” In other news, EVP West Coast Creative Lionel Conway exits (see item below), with word that a replacement will be named shortly. (6/1a)

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