Sony BMG Music Entertainment Australia has teamed with Sydney-based talent management company Peppermint Blue to set up a new imprint Peppermint Records.

Sony BMG Music Entertainment Australia has teamed with Sydney-based talent management company Peppermint Blue to set up a new imprint Peppermint Records.

Peppermint Blue is jointly-run by British-born Pat Cleary, who set it up in 1999 to manage hit dance act Madison Avenue, and by Mark Byrne who operates Sydney singing and dancing studio Brent Street Talent School.

The company manages five Sony BMG's signings, who will transfer to Peppermint Records.

Among those artists are Rogue Traders, whose debut album "Here Come the Drums", is certified double platinum for Australian shipments of more than 140,000, and will be released in the United Kingdom this year on RCA Records.

Another Peppermint artist is TV Rock, comprising DJ duo Grant Smillie and Ivan Gough, will release their debut single "Flaunt It" in the United Kingdom through Ministry of Sound in August. The track has topped the Australian Recording Industry Assn. Top 20 Dance Chart for the past five weeks.

Fashion model/songwriter Erica Baxter, U.K.-born singer songwriter Amy Pearson and a new project tentatively called Girl Band, will also record for the new imprint.

Cleary tells Billboard.biz that he hopes to find many new acts through the talent school and utilize the songwriters and producers in Peppermint's management stable.

These include Andy Van and Cheyne, who formed Madison Avenue whose single "Don't Call Me Baby" was a No. 1 hit in Britain and Australia.

In a statement, Denis Handlin, chairman and CEO of Sony BMG's operations in Australia and New Zealand, said, "The creation of Peppermint Records further builds on Sony BMG's existing reputation as the clear market leader in local talent."

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