Industry vet joins from Arista.

Larry Mestel has been named COO/GM of Virgin Records. The move had been expected.

Mestel, who was most recently executive VP/GM of Arista, will oversee Virgin's A&R administration, business affairs, finance, human resources and international. Based in New York, he reports to chairman/CEO Matt Serletic.

It appears that Mestel is taking over certain duties from Roy Lott, the president/COO of Virgin who has not been seen in the office for some time, sources say. However, a Virgin spokesperson insists, "Roy Lott is still an employee of Virgin." She would not comment on Lott's current title.

Before joining Arista in 2000, Mestel held posts as COO of Palm Entertainment and COO of Island Entertainment Group.