John Kennedy will become chairman/CEO of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry in London on Jan. 1, 2005, succeeding Jay Berman.

John Kennedy will become chairman/CEO of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry in London on Jan. 1, 2005, succeeding Jay Berman. Kennedy will start work at the trade group on Oct. 1, allowing for a three-month transition period before Berman's departure.

Kennedy has headed international record companies since the mid-'90s; he most recently served as president/COO of Universal Music International, a position he exited in February. He has been actively involved in the IFPI's work for several years, participating on the main board of directors and chairing the European regional board from 2002 until this year.

Earlier in his 25-year career, Kennedy was a successful entertainment lawyer, working with artists, managers, and major and independent record labels. In the '80s he played a leading role in the Band Aid and Live Aid projects, for which he was honored with an OBE from the British government in 1985.

Berman will have completed six years leading the IFPI when he returns to his native United States at the end of this year.

The IFPI is a non-profit organization that represents sound recording producers/labels and music video producers worldwide, with more than 1,450 members in 75 countries and affiliated industry associations in 48 countries.