Universal Music U.K. has diversified into TV production. The music major said today (June 26) it has launched Globe Productions, a division focused on creating new television formats and innovative TV

Universal Music U.K. has diversified into TV production. The music major said today (June 26) it has launched Globe Productions, a division focused on creating new television formats and innovative TV platforms for its artists. Universal first suggested its intentions to launch such a unit in April.

In the role as GM, Iain Funnell will run Globe's day-to-day operations with effect from September. Funnell is currently Polydor U.K. director of TV & DVD. He will report to London-based Universal Music Operations president David Joseph.

The record company, whose U.K. signings include Scissor Sisters, Keane and Razorlight, is launching its TV production arm with a brief to develop programming around its current and catalog artists. New television formats will be launched, both in music-based and factual fields. Program concepts will be developed in-house, while the unit's executives will work closely with independent production companies.

"The launch of Globe is a natural progression for Universal Music," comments Universal Music Group International chairman/CEO Lucian Grainge in a statement. "The opportunities for our artists in television are immense, and through Globe we are taking a more pro-active approach, closing the gap between artists and broadcasters." Grainge notes that his vision for the new division is to develop ground-breaking TV formats which will be globally successful.

Suzi Aplin, one of the most respected producers working in U.K. music television, will explore opportunities for Globe in a part-time consultancy role. Aplin continues her work with Open Mike, the BBC and Comic Relief among others.

Talent agent Anita Land joins the Globe board as non-executive director.

In recent weeks, Universal Music U.K. has been particularly active in enhancing its projects in the broadcasting space. Last Tuesday (June 20), the music firm unveiled details of a "strategic partnership" with Channel 4 Radio, a unit of the so-named British national broadcaster. Universal will provide input on behalf of its artists for a proposed national digital radio license, which Channel 4 is expected to bid.