Vanessa Hutley To Lead Australia's Music Industry Piracy Investigations
Vanessa Hutley To Lead Australia's Music Industry Piracy Investigations

A former director at Microsoft will lead the Australian music industry's anti-piracy activities.

Starting Sept. 12, Vanessa Hutley will start as General Manager of the Music Industry Piracy Investigations (MIPI), where she succeeds the outgoing Sabiene Heindl. Hutley has more than ten years' experience with Microsoft Australia, serving as senior corporate attorney and director of intellectual property.

MIPI is involved in civil and criminal rights enforcement, lobbying and education in this market. The Sydney-based organization acts on behalf of the 125 record companies through their association ARIA, and more than 2,000 songwriters and music publishers through its links with mechanical rights society AMCOS.

More recently, MIPI supported the Australasian roll-out of the international "Music Matters" education campaign, which launched Aug. 10 in these parts.

"As a key stakeholder in MIPI we are delighted that someone with Vanessa's skills and experience has been secured for the role," notes APRA/AMCOS CEO Brett Cottle in a statement. "With the emphasis in anti-piracy activity shifting to policy development and industry agreement in the on-line area, Vanessa is perfectly placed to make a major contribution in her new role".

ARIA chairman and Sony Music Australia CEO Denis Handlin adds, "With her previous background and achievements, she is very well-positioned to lead MIPI into the next phase of its development.

As previously reported, Heindl is exiting MIPI after five years to take up the position as senior stakeholder advisor at NBN Co, the firm overseeing construction of the Australian government's multi-billion-dollar national broadband network.

Like elsewhere, piracy has stripped away a large chunk of Australia's record business over the past decade. After a return to growth in 2009, the record market slid 13.9% in 2010 to a value of Australian $384 million ($408 million). According to the IFPI's 2010 "Digital Music Report," a steep fall in physical sales was accompanied by "growing digital piracy."