Liberty merging DMX, AEI

New digital company to focus on home, biz channels

HOLLYWOOD — Liberty Digital announced Monday its intent to merge subsid DMX Music with Seattle-based AEI Music Network to create a digital music company that will focus on developing music channels for home and business subscribers.

Liberty Digital will own a majority of the new company. Three members of the board of directors will be appointed by DMX, two from AEI. Michael Malone, chairman and CEO of AEI, was tapped chairman of the board and Lon Trozel, prexy-CEO of DMX, will serve as prexy and chief operating officer.

A CEO will be named at a later date, with the merger expected to be completed by the end of the year.

“This merger will create a new, dynamic and growth-oriented company strategically positioned to deliver music programming to homes and businesses around the world,” said Lee Masters, prexy and CEO of Liberty Digital.

Execs said the company will use both satellite and broadband networks to deliver music licensed from the major labels to its customers.

DMX’s current clients include Bloomingdale’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, Macy’s and Brinker Intl. Restaurants. AEI also has a foothold in the retail market, with customers like the Limited, Pottery Barn, Tommy Hilfiger and Abercrombie & Fitch.

“The opportunities in technology and the use and enjoyment of music are greater today than they have ever been in our history,” said Malone. “The natural fit of the two companies’ cultures, distribution resources and developed technologies makes this a natural merging of interests.”

Shares of Liberty Digital closed up almost 3% in trading Monday to close at $18.25.

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