Cooperative Music, the international music marketing network, has launched an affiliate in Australia.
Based in Melbourne, Cooperative Music Australia and its network of labels will be distributed by parent company Universal Music in Australia and New Zealand.
Cooperative Music Australia will represent labels such as Bella Union, DFA Records, Downtown Music, Heavenly Recordings, Kitsune, Mexican Summer and Kemado Records, Transgressive, V2 Music and Wichita Recordings.
For the past five years, those labels were represented Down Under by Shock Records, a relationship through which Co-Op landed platinum success (70,000 units) with Wichita-signed Bloc Party and gold (35,000 units) with V2 Music-signed Phoenix.
Helming the new unit will be a familiar face in former Shock GM Tim Janes and Neil Robertson, previously Cooperative Music label manager.
"With the team we have and the backing we have from Universal, the idea is we want to become a very significant player in the independent sector over there," Vincent Clery-Melin, Cooperative Music's London-based General Manager tells Billboard.biz.
In time, the Australian company will "definitely" add homegrown labels and artists to its network, explains Clery-Melin. "There's some really (domestic) exciting talent which I think can do really well through this kind of set up at home. But also as we've got a really good international network," he notes, "if we find the right bands or the right label, whose records could travel, we could also offer that as part of our service. We'd love to do that."
The first batch of Co-Op releases in these parts will roll-out from July 1, among them will be records by Digitalism, The Black Lips, Is Tropical and CSS.
Back in April 2005, V2 Music established Cooperative Music as a European marketing and distribution network. In the years that followed, Richard Branson sold his V2 business to the Morgan Stanley bank, and in August 2007 the business was acquired by its present owner, Universal Music Group.
Janes joins Cooperative Australia at the end of June. His departure from Shock coincides with a restructuring which has Leigh Gruppetta elevated to the newly-created role of General Manager Music, and earlier this month saw the departure of Ragged Company Touring GM and national publicist George Hatzigeorgiou.