PIAS Grows U.S. Operations
European independent PIAS is ramping up its U.S. operations with the launch of a new Los Angeles office and several staff appointments as its existing New York base.
Matthew Owen has been named general manager of the West Coast office, which will operate as the hub of PIAS’ classical and jazz repertoire, including the historic Harmonia Mundi, which the Belgium-based company acquired last fall.
In addition to growing Harmonia Mundi -- and its in-house labels Jazz and World Village -- the L.A. team will look after PIAS’ other indie classical imprints such as Alia Vox, Channel Classics, Hyperion and Onyx Classics, as well as expand its roster of jazz artists and releases. René Goiffon and Robina Young, the founders of Harmonia Mundi USA, will continue to consult for the company with a focus on developing the company's U.S. artist roster.
Over on the East Coast, PIAS’ New York office has appointed Allan Benedict as national radio promotion manager and Sally Hedberg as national publicity manager. They will report to general manager Sean Maxson and work alongside marketing director Justin Gressley, who arrived from Domino Records last year, and director of publicity Brid Walpole.
The New York office will continue to work releases from wholly-owned labels Play It Again Sam and Different Recordings, alongside associated labels such as Bella Union, Heavenly, Transgressive and Sunday Best. Maxson’s team also has a remit to develop a roster of domestic artists to compliment recent U.S. signings High Highs and Violent Femmes.
In addition to the U.S. exec appointments, Maureen Spillane has been hired from Fontana North to run PAIS’ Canadian operation. Spillane, Owen and Maxson will all report to Edwin Schröter, PIAS group managing director, who says that the company's U.S. expansion “reinforces our commitment to sensibly grow our presence in North America.”
“In Sean and Matthew we have two highly experienced executives who together with their specialist teams will add real weight to both our U.S. and global offering,” he went on to say.
PIAS, which was founded in 1982 by Kenny Gates and Michel Lambot, has also announced a renewed U.S. sales and distribution agreement with RED. As part of the deal, RED will take over sales & distribution for Harmonia Mundi from May 1.