Merlin’s Influence Consolidated by New US Board & Members

20 June, 2011

Senior Executives at EpitaphE1Yep Roc/Redeye and Domino USA join US Board

New members including Sub PopMergeNaxos of America add further weight to roster of over 14,000 labels

20th June 2011:- Global rights agency Merlin has voted four new US members to its board in a recent member election.  The appointments, from some of the leading US independents, are:

-       Dave Hansen, General Manager, Epitaph (Weezer, New Found Glory)

-       William Crowley, VP Digital & Mobile, E1 Entertainment (formerly Koch) (Moby, Joan Osborne, Bela Fleck & the Flecktones)

-       Kris Gillespie, General Manager, Domino USA (Arctic Monkeys, Animal Collective, Franz Ferdinand)

-       Glenn Dicker, Co-owner, Yep Roc Records (Nick Lowe, Liam Finn) / Redeye Distribution (Acony, Daptone, Alive, Warp, Barsuk)

The four new board members join longstanding members Tom Silverman, founder of Tommy Boy Records and Bob Frank, President of syndication network Qello (former President of E1) on the US board, both of whom were re-elected in the recent ballot. The first meeting of the new board takes place today, Monday 20th June, in New York.

The election comes after a period of strong membership growth which has seen significant US labels including Merge Records (Arcade Fire, Spoon, She & Him), Sup Pop (Fleet Foxes), Naxos of AmericaSecretly Canadian DistributionJagjaguwar (Bon Iver), Thrill JockeyLatin Cool RecordsRighteous Babe and Music Media Mexico join the likes of Beggars/Matador, Saddlecreek, Victory and distributors Redeye/Yeproc, Virtual Label and United for Opportunity as Merlin members. Merlin’s global membership now covers over 14,000 of the world’s most prominent independents.

Newly elected board member Dave Hansen will draw on his 25 years of experience in independent music, William Crowley meanwhile has managed Koch and E1’s digital music initiatives over the past decade leading to his current position.

Glenn Dicker helped lead Redeye to become the 2nd largest independent distributor in the US, meanwhile Kris Gillespie has been part of Domino’s US operations for eight of its ten years of existence, previously holding positions at Matador, Warp and Rough Trade labels.

Said Kris Gillespie “It is an honor to be joining Merlin, especially at this critical juncture in our industry's history.  The organization has done a commendable job fighting for its independent members and looking out for our rights while tackling the issues that are challenging every strata of the music business and I look forward to contributing to those efforts”

Commented Glenn Dicker “I'm pleased to have the opportunity to dig deeper into the issues that face the independent community and participate in helping find equitable solutions for our important content holders.”

Bob Frank added “It's been an honor to be a part of Merlin and watch it grow from an idea to a thriving and important part of the music business.  Equally rewarding is being a part of this passionate team of global executives."  

Martin Mills said, Chairman Merlin, Beggars Group “I am delighted that these elections have strengthened our representation in the front line of the campaign to have new digital services succeed through treating Merlin member independent repertoire properly”

Charles Caldas Merlin CEO commented "These new appointments from our US membership add an inestimable amount of knowledge, experience and value to the Merlin board. The growth in our membership underlines the growing importance of Merlin to the independent community and I look forward to continuing to work with this board as we face the challenges ahead."

The board is split equally across Merlin’s three operational territories - with five each from North America, Europe, rest of the world - to ensure the company fully represents the varied geographical needs of the sector.