As expected, hip-hop imprint Ruff Ryders has signed a worldwide joint venture with Virgin Records, for new artists and future compilations. Past Ruff Ryders artists such as Eve, the Lox, Jadakiss and

As expected, hip-hop imprint Ruff Ryders has signed a worldwide joint venture with Virgin Records, for new artists and future compilations. Past Ruff Ryders artists such as Eve, the Lox, Jadakiss and Styles will remain on Interscope Records, while DMX will remain on Island Def Jam.

The first artists on the Ruff Ryders/Virgin roster include Drag-On, Jin and Cherry Ganz. Drag-On's new album, "Hell and Back," is due Sept. 16 as the first release on the imprint, while Chinese-American rapper Jin's debut "Almost Famous" is set for an Oct. 7 release.

"Ruff Ryders has consistently pinpointed not only hot trends but true artists," Virgin CEO Matt Serletic says in a statement. "They have an incredible ability to capture the sound of the streets, while appealing to both purists and mainstream audiences." Added Ruff Ryders co-CEO Joaquin "Waah" Dean, "We're really excited to team up with Virgin to take Ruff Ryders to the next level."

Under the deal, Ruff Ryders will sign and record artists through Virgin and work with the label on marketing and promotion for all releases. The companies will also produce compilation records; Ruff Ryders' three label compilations, "Ryde or Die" volumes 1-3, have combined sales of 3.7 million copies in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan.