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Statement on proposed Global Release Date for Music

DG Kim Bayley issued the following statement on proposed Global Street Date.

Following a meeting called by UK record companies trade association the BPI on Friday, 3 October to discuss the proposed Global Release Date for music, Entertainment Retailers Association Director General Kim Bayley this morning issued the following statement:

"We are grateful to the BPI for the efforts they have made to consult with UK retailers, but it seems apparent that a decision to impose a worldwide Friday release date for music is being pushed through by the international headquarters of the major record labels regardless of any input from retailers and digital services in the UK, US or elsewhere.

"ERA believes there are strong arguments in favour of adopting a Global Release Date. However, it is incumbent on those proposing the change to make a robust assessment of the costs and benefits of choosing any particular day of the week. Unfortunately those promoting this plan are giving the impression that they are set on selecting Fridayregardless of any evidence.

"A Friday release date will undoubtedly cause logistical problems and additional costs for both digital and physical retailers. The current UK Monday release day allows for restocking and correction of metadata issues well ahead of the busy weekend period, something a Friday release day would not allow.

"Consumer research in the UK indicates that music fans prefer a Monday release day.  Furthermore indications are that the video industry has no intention of moving its own release day to Friday, meaning retailers will potentially have to manage two separate release days.

"The only justification for a Friday release date would be if it resulted in a net increase in sales. No evidence has yet been put forward that this would be the case.

"ERA is working with the IFPI, the international body which represents the three majors, to gather such evidence, but it seems that their hands are tied.

"ERA urges the executives within the major companies who are pursuing a Global Friday Release Date to adopt a more open-minded approach and to undertake genuine economic research into the impact of their plans. If they do not, they run the risk of making a difficult trading environment for music retailers and digital services even more difficult."


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