Imagem Music has sealed a global publishing agreement with acclaimed U.K. jazz outfit Portico Quartet.

The Dutch publishing company signed the deal during the 2008 Mercury Music Prize ceremony in London (Sept. 9), which Portico Quartet attended as one of this year's nominees. Its album "Knee-Deep in the North Sea" (Vortex) eventually lost out to Elbow's "The Seldom Seen Kid" (Fiction/Polydor).

Portico Quartet bassist, Duncan Bellamy said in a statement: "We are super happy to be signing to a company with the energy and enthusiasm of Imagem."

"Portico Quartet are one of the most exciting new bands I have heard for a long time," added Imagem managing director Tim Smith. "The Mercury nomination is just the start for them. We are pleased to be involved with them at this exciting time in their career and we are looking forward to helping them develop in all areas over the next 12 months."