Hamburg / New York (ots)
Veteran executive team to lead BeMusic, the world's #1 global
music service company
BeMusic brings together digital and physical worlds of
entertainment for all consumers
Bertelsmann eCommerce Group (BeCG), a unit of Bertelsmann AG,
announced today a new executive management team to lead BeMusic, the
world's largest music services group with more than 23 million
subscribers and customers, and $1 billion in music sales. BeMusic
also holds and is developing its strategic alliance with Napster, the
popular person-to-person file sharing music service with more than 60
million registered users.
BeMusic was formed July 1, consisting of CDNOW, the leading
Internet-based music retailer, BMG Direct, home of BMG Music Service,
the largest record club business in North America, and myplay, the
pioneering digital music locker company, among other assets.
Effective immediately, BeMusic will be aligned into three divisions
-- BeMusic Direct, BeMusic Digital and BeMusic Services. Andreas
Schmidt, 40, will serve as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of
BeMusic, while continuing his existing position as President and
Chief Executive Officer of BeCG. The newly organized divisions of
BeMusic will report directly to Schmidt.
"We have assembled an incredibly talented team to guide BeMusic,
which is positioned as the one-stop shop for today's and tomorrow's
consumer, covering the complete spectrum of how people buy and enjoy
music," said Schmidt. "As consumers demand easy access to music in a
variety of digital and physical forms, BeMusic stands to deliver
their music through any possible channel, including music club
purchasing, e-tailing, digital downloads and streaming, and digital
subscription services. Our executive team will build on the
already-long term relationship we have with consumers, drawing on the
world's largest music customer database."
Schmidt appointed Stuart Goldfarb, 46, as President and Chief
Executive of BeMusic Direct. He will also serve as a member of the
Board of BeMusic. Goldfarb, most recently President and CEO of
bol.com, will manage all operations of BMG Direct and CDNOW. BeMusic
Direct has over 500 employees in New York and Philadelphia, serving
12.2 million subscribers through the world's largest music clubs and
4.5 million customers through the leading online music retailer,
CDNOW. BeMusic Direct provides a unique consumer experience in
delivering music online and offline. Mike Krupit, President and CEO
of CDNOW, will report to Goldfarb. George McMillan, 47, President and
CEO of BMG Direct, will leave the company to become Chief Financial
Officer at Andover, Mass.-based CMGI, the diversified Internet
operating company. Schmidt said "I want to personally thank George
for his significant contributions to the development of BMG Direct
and I wish him the best in his next challenge."
Tom Hoekzema, 47, has been named President and CEO of BeMusic
Services, the online and offline fulfillment division of BeMusic. He
will also serve as a Member of the Board of BeMusic. Hoekzema, who
was Senior Vice President of Operations for BMG Direct, will lead
BeMusic Services' 1,800 employees in Indianapolis, Ind. and Duncan,
S.C., in addition to overseeing the Applications Services Group and
Customer Service departments. BeMusic Services delivers over 150
million CDs each year to the BeMusic Customers worldwide through its
state-of-the-art services, distribution and fulfillment facilities.
Schmidt will coordinate BeMusic Digital's operations until a
President and CEO for the division is named. BeMusic Digital has 100
employees and serves over 23 million customers through its myplay
digital locker and subscription services and its worldwide leading
music websites. BeMusic Digital is also charged with building the new
integrated music destination service for BeMusic that will combine
all forms of online and digital distribution of music including
clubs, retail and digital subscriptions. Daniel Alegre, 32, vice
president, business development of BeCG, has been appointed vice
president BeMusic Digital and will develop strategy for the division.
Bill Sorenson, 46, has been appointed Executive Vice President,
Chief Financial and Chief Administrative Office of BeMusic in
addition to being an appointed member of the Board for the company.
BeMusic's finance, human resources, and corporate technology
departments will report Sorenson. Sorenson will remain as Chief
Financial Officer of BeCG.
Patrick Reilly, 44, has been appointed, Senior Vice President of
Corporate Communications for BeMusic. Reilly will also continue in
that role at BeCG.
Worth Linen, 48, has been appointed by the Board of BeMusic as
outside Director to the Board. Linen is founder of WLA Worth Linen
Associates. He served from 1991 through 1996 as President and CEO of
BMG Direct and most recently as Chairman and CEO of The Signature
Group, the world's second-largest affinity marketing company. Linen
will focus on coordination and integration of all direct marketing
activities of BeMusic.
"With this new management team in place, BeMusic will continue to
expand its position as the worldwide leading music service company
and maintain its leading position in developing the technologies and
business models that respect rights holders and bring music to
consumers in the easiest and most convenient way," said Schmidt. "I
wish all my colleagues good luck in their new positions as we move
forward with our vision of removing the barriers that will allow the
global music consumer to access music anywhere, anytime."
BeMusic is the world's largest music services group with more than
23 million subscribers and customers, $1 billion in music sales, and
has over 11 million unique visitors per month worldwide.
Headquartered in New York City, BeMusic operates some of the world's
best-known music brands, including BMG Music Service, the world's
largest music club; CDNOW, the #1 music retailer on the Internet in
the U.S; industry-leading technology and Digital Rights Management
companies; and myplay Inc., the pioneering digital music locker
service. BeMusic is focused on creating the one-stop shop for today's
and tomorrow's consumer, covering the complete spectrum of how people
buy and enjoy music. BeMusic delivers music through any possible
channel, including music club purchasing, e-tailing, digital
downloads and streaming, and digital subscriptions services. Formed
in July 2001, BeMusic consists of three core divisions: BeMusic
Direct, BeMusic Services and BeMusic Digital. BeMusic also holds a
strategic alliance with Napster, the worldwide person-to-person music
file-sharing service with more than 60 million registered users.
Bertelsmann eCommerce Group was formed in July 2000 as a division
of Bertelsmann AG. Objective of the group is to integrate all forms
of digital and physical distribution over the internet, broadband
and mobile networks for all media content. Headquartered in New York,
BeCG operates various businesses in Europe and the United States.
BeCG is part of Direct Group Bertelsmann. Bertelsmann has access to
over 200 million customers worldwide.
** Biographies of BeMusic executives are available upon request **
ots Originaltext: Bertelsmann eCommerce Group
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