Major indie music labels join Apple�s iTunes Music Store in Europe

Apple today announced that it has signed licensing agreements with three of the largest European independent music labels, Beggars Group, Sanctuary Records Group and V2, adding tens of thousands of additional independent tracks from leading artists to the iTunes Music Store in the UK, France and Germany. With three of the most influential independent record labels on board, iTunes Music Store customers in Europe now have access to an impressive catalog of independent artists including Basement Jaxx, The Crystal Method, Interpol, The Libertines, Morrissey, the Pixies, Prodigy, Stereophonics, Paul Weller and The White Stripes.

“We�re thrilled to add three of Europe�s largest indie labels to our iTunes Music Store in the UK, France and Germany,” said Steve Jobs, Apple�s CEO in the press release. “We welcome Beggars, Sanctuary and V2 to the iTunes family, and plan to add many more independent labels soon.”

“Apple has revolutionized the music industry, and iTunes and iPod are changing the listening habits of music fans at an incredible pace,” said Martin Mills, chairman of Beggars Group in the press release. “In the US, some of our key individual tracks are selling in quantities that have been inconceivable for years. We�re delighted that we and other independent music labels are now joining iTunes in Europe.”

“We see this as an opportunity to bring our extensive repertoire to a very active community of music fans,” said Joe Cokell, CEO of Sanctuary Records Group in the press release. “With this agreement, iTunes users will have immediate access to contemporary new releases from Morrissey and The Libertines as well as vintage catalogues from classic artists, including Bob Marley, Black Sabbath and the Sex Pistols.”

“After experiencing tremendous success with the iTunes Music Store in the US we are thrilled to be taking our relationship to Europe,” said Tony Harlow, CEO of V2 in the press release. “Now music lovers in the UK, France and Germany will be able to download great music from the likes of Paul Weller, Stereophonics and The Datsuns.”

The iTunes Music Store in the US, UK, France and Germany offers an extensive music library of over 700,000 songs in each country. With Apple�s legendary ease-of-use, pioneering features, personal use rights and breakthrough pricing of just $0.99, �0.99 and �0.79, the iTunes Music Store is the best way for PC and Mac users in each country to legally discover, purchase and download music online. The iTunes Music Store gives users the ability to play songs on up to five personal computers, burn a song onto CDs an unlimited number of times, burn the same playlist up to seven times and listen to their music on an unlimited number of iPods.

More info about Apple’s iTunes Music Store here.

23 Comments

  1. It was only a matter of time before the Euro Indie labels signed on to the iTMS. After all, it’s better to sell lots of songs at a reasonable price over a three-year agreement than to hold out for a bigger percentage and lose the sales.

    As far as I can tell, the major driver on the costs of songs on iTMS is the royalty payment to the labels, which is then divided up at various levels. At current sales volumes the iTMS is providing service very close to break even. So the only ways to boost royalty payments are increased prices or Apple taking a loss.

    The current iTMS pricing and terms of usage are reasonable. I hope that the labels (majors or indies) don’t get too greedy.

  2. With these independent labels addaed to iTMS I wonder what the official tracks-count is. A few days ago one of the competitors (I can’t rember who, honestly!) was boasting about having a catalogue over one million tracks. Apple will now start closing that gap.

  3. Note: “The iTunes Music Store in the US, UK, France and Germany offers an extensive music library of over 700,000 songs in each country.” (reports initially said each store had �450,000)

    Related note: Apple has taken a majority stake in PortalPlayer who no longer work on players for other companies.

  4. I wish you could order music from other countries. The UK store has a better variety of the music I like. If you “want here today gone tomorrow pop junk” the US iTMS will work. Open the stores world-wide.

  5. Sol: iTMS is the largest store so far.

    OD2 claimed that in the future they will reach over 1Mil songs. They are now at 300k.

    In one word: FUD or same as Wintel users bragging about how great *is* vaporware Longhorn and how superior *is* to OS X.

    iTunes is now over 800k songs and the soon-very-soon-we-truly-promise 1Mil OD2 store not compatible with iPod is at ~300k. Which gap are we talking about? and who has to close the gap?

    LOL

  6. NoPCZone…there is an interview in Wired with a former senior manager at PortalPlayer…that’s where the info comes from. PP dropped all other interested parties and went with Apple exclusively.

  7. It’s only a single source, and that fellow Knauss (who made at least one obvious error in his comments) but the report is here and with the following quotes.

    http://www.wired.com/news/mac/0,2125,64286-2,00.html?tw=wn_story_page_next1

    “But PortalPlayer went exclusively with Apple. “When Apple came to the table, we dropped all our other customers,” Knauss said. For the next eight months, the company’s 200 employees in the United States and 80 engineers in India worked exclusively on the iPod, Knauss said.”

    “Knauss said the problem was eventually fixed and shortly after, Apple bought a majority stake in the company.”

  8. Re: PortalPlayter
    That was during the time of the development of the iPod when they only worked on the iPod and dropped the other projects. Portal stills owns the software patents and added video components a while back. No indication that Apple has purchased them.

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