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Ames to head EMI North America

Executive fills slot formerly held by Munns

Music distrib EMI has tapped Roger Ames as head of North America operations, reporting to EMI Group chief exec Eric Nicoli.

Ames, who ran Warner Music when it was in the Time Warner family, will oversee EMI’s recorded music operations in the U.S. and Canada. EMI owns the Capitol, Virgin and Blue Note record labels and has Norah Jones, Coldplay and the Rolling Stones on its artist roster.

All the EMI division heads will report to Ames: Capitol Music Group chief Jason Flom, Blue Note Label Group’s Bruce Lundvall, EMM’s Ronn Werre, Capitol Nashville’s Mike Dungan and Caroline’s Bill Hein.

“Roger’s vast experience and track record in the creative community equip him well to oversee our North American business at this important time in our company’s development,” Nicoli said. 

Ames fills the slot formerly held by David Munns, who ankled in January as the company began a major reorganization. EMI has altered the structure of its pop music labels Capitol and Virgin and made significant staffing cuts. Company expects to announce shortly a digital chief.

Ames has been a senior adviser to Time Warner and EMI since 2004. He began his music business career with EMI U.K. in 1975, joined Polygram U.K. in 1979 and became chairman-CEO of Polygram U.K. He was exec VP of Polygram and president of the Polygram Music Group from 1996 until it was purchased and merged into Universal in 1999.

The first time EMI and Warner Music attempted to seal a merger, in 2000, Ames was pegged as the man to run the joint company, reporting to Nicoli. At the time Ames was chairman-CEO of the music group, succeeding Bob Daly and Terry Semel.

Separately, EMI Music chief operating officer Ivan Gavin will be ankling his post.

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