Vital Distribution has struck an exclusive pact to handle Victory Records product in the United Kingdom and Ireland, with effect from Feb. 1.

Vital Distribution has struck an exclusive pact to handle Victory Records product in the United Kingdom and Ireland, with effect from Feb. 1.

Until now, Victory product has been distributed in the U.K. with PHD through an agreement forged in 1996.

In a statement, Victory founder Tony Brummel comments, "With Victory's ever increasing profile in the territory and the expansion of our London office this was a natural alliance."

Vital managing director Peter Thompson describes Victory as "one of the hottest independent labels in the world," adding "it represents all that is good and strong about independence."

New albums from Hawthorne Heights, Action Action and Waterdown will be the first releases under the new relationship. Chicago-based Victory recently renewed terms with RED Distribution for the United States.

London-based Vital was launched in 1993 through a joint-venture between Revolver Distribution and independent Brussels-based music company Play It Again Sam.

It currently distributes U.K. labels such as XL (label home to White Stripes, Prodigy), Domino (Franz Ferdinand, Arctic Monkeys), Big Brother (Oasis) and handles releases for such U.S. labels as Saddlecreek and Matador.