Audio Network, the U.K.-based music licensing company that recently nabbed the Queen's Award for Enterprise, is expanding internationally, Billboard.biz has learned.

The company is understood to be opening a U.S. office in New York during the fourth quarter of this year. It is also believed to be in talks on opening a branch in Australia.

The New York move is in response to growth in North America, sources say. The company recently acquired clients such as Toronto-based TV-production company Big Coat Productions, New York-based Rainlake Productions, plus ad agency Rubin Postaer and Associates. They join long-term U.S. clients like Bloomberg TV.

In the U.K., Audio Network clients include Endemol, the producer of reality-TV franchise Big Brother; and Shine, Elisabeth Murdoch's media group.

Audio Network also operates as a label, music publisher and owner of a catalog with more than 14,000 tracks. It clinched the Queen's Award for its innovative licensing model, which has seen the company digitize its library for use across multiple platforms.

The company says it finds the need to clear music with societies for international use restrictive, and has not joined authors' societies like the U.K.'s MCPS.

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