Former EMI Records Group U.K. president/CEO Jean-Francois Cecillon has returned to the record business. He was appointed president of EMI Music Continental Europe today, replacing Emmanuel De Buretel,

Former EMI Records Group U.K. president/CEO Jean-Francois Cecillon has returned to the record business. He was appointed president of EMI Music Continental Europe today, replacing Emmanuel De Buretel, who has left the company.

De Buretel is the first senior casualty of EMI's global restructuring, announced this morning.

In his new role, Cecillon takes regional responsibility for all of EMI Music's operations in continental Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Based in London, he reports to Alain Levy, chairman/CEO of EMI Music.

"Emmanuel is a talented and creative executive. In his time at Virgin and then EMI, he has made an enormous contribution to the careers of our artists," comments Levy in a statement.

"Now we need to move on to a new phase in the development of our business in the continental Europe region, which has been severely impacted by piracy and is undergoing rapid change in terms of new technology and consumer demand. We need to maximize our operating performance there and Jean-Francois Cecillon's experience and drive will be key to helping us to improve."

Cecillon brings 15 years of experience in the music business. During the '90s, he ran EMI Records Group in the United Kingdom, where he was responsible for signing Robbie Williams. From 1998-2001, he was CEO of Sega Europe, overseeing the launch of the Dreamcast game console.

Until recently, Cecillon was chairman of the Music Matrix, the British marketing firm which produced the "46664" AIDS awareness and fundraising campaign.

De Buretel joined EMI in 1985 as head of Virgin France's publishing operations in Paris. He later became president of Virgin Records France and EMI Music France. He moved to London in 1998, when he was appointed president of Virgin Continental Europe with the assignment to build a continental European roster, strengthen the A&R base of each company and grow local and regional domestic market share.

De Buretel was unavailable for comment.

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