In its first major signing since the merger, Sony BMG Music Entertainment Australia has added singer/songwriter Alex Lloyd to its roster.

In its first major signing since the merger, Sony BMG Music Entertainment Australia has added singer/songwriter Alex Lloyd to its roster.

"I have enormous respect for Alex and have admired his music for many years," says Sony BMG Music Entertainment Australia chairman/CEO Denis Handlin.

Lloyd, whose latest album "Distant Light" won him an ARIA in 2003 for Best Male Act, was previously signed to EMI Music.

He recorded for EMI three albums that together shipped 500,000 copies in Australia and won four ARIA awards. He also had chart success in European territories. Lloyd, who is managed by his wife Amelia, parted with EMI earlier this year.

"After much deliberation, thought and discussion in regards to my new home as a singer/songwriter, I am extremely positive about my decision to move to Sony BMG," says Lloyd in a statement. "Change can be scary but at the same time exciting and after talking with Denis Handlin and the A&R team, I feel as though Sony BMG is the best place for me to start this new chapter in my career."

A new album is due mid-2005, to be recorded in the United States.

Sony BMG Australia's roster includes Delta Goodrem and Pete Murray. Sources tell Billboard.biz that Sony BMG has started to drop some artists. Acts understood to have been cut from the major's stable include singer/songwriter Wendy Matthews, pop singer Nikki Webster, and former Bachelor Girl singer Tania Doko. Sony BMG declined to comment.