Loudeye Acquires OD2

Loudeye, a business to business digital media company has acquired Peter Gabriel and Charles Grimsdale’s On Demand Distribution (OD2) business.

The move will effectively double Loudeye’s revenue, and has created the world’s largest digital media company.

OD2 provide outsourced digital distribution for companies like Coca Cola when they want to launch an online music store. Customers include HMV, MyCokeMusic and Wannadoo, but combined Loudeye and OD2 will have more than 200 customers across the world.

Jeff Cavins, Loudeye’s president and chief executive officer said in a statement: “By combining with OD2, the leading digital music service provider in Europe, we become the largest business-to-business digital media provider in the world with the largest licensed digital music catalogue in the industry,” “This significantly strengthens our solutions for our customers globally and immediately expands our customer relationships and partner opportunities. Together OD2 and Loudeye deliver a powerful, next-generation digital media platform to enable companies to launch complete digital music offerings around the world. In addition, this will globalize Loudeye’s content management, piracy protection and promotion services and will enable us to leverage OD2’s broad reach and strong customer relationships to expand our business into new markets.”

“OD2 and Loudeye share virtually identical goals, vision and passion for the future of digital music and I see tremendous opportunities for our combined company to drive digital media deployments worldwide,” said Charles Grimsdale, co-founder and chief executive officer of OD2. “Our proven success managing the specific challenges of pan-European digital media deployments will be a strong asset for Loudeye and significantly raises the barriers to entry for other service providers looking to enter the European market. Furthermore, Loudeye will enable us to offer a much broader range of new services to our current customers and extend our capabilities into such fast growing areas as the wireless arena.”

With online music sales across Europe predicted to reach €1.3 billion by 2007, there is a lot at stake in the industry – expect more mergers and disappearances over the next 18 months.

On Demand Distribtion


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Fraser Lovatt

Fraser Lovatt has spent the last fifteen years working in publishing, TV and the Internet in various capacities, and believes that they will be seperate platforms for at least a while yet. His main interests at the moment are exploring where Linux is taking home entertainment and how technology is conferring technical skills on more and more people. Fraser Lovatt was born in the same year that 2001: A Space Odyssey was delighting and confusing people in the cinemas, and developed a lifelong love of technology as soon as he realised that things could be taken apart, sometimes put back together again, but mostly left in bits or made into something the original designer hadn't quite planned upon. At school he was definitely in the ZX Spectrum/Magpie/BMX camp, rather than the BBC Micro/Blue Peter/well-behaved group. This is all deeply ironic as he later went on to spend nine years working at the BBC. After a few years of working as a bookseller in Scotland, ("Back when it was actually a skilled profession" he'll tell anyone still listening), he moved to England for reasons he can't quite explain adequately to himself. After a couple of publishing jobs punctuated by sporadic bursts of travelling and photography came the aforementioned nine years at the BBC where he specialised in internet technologies and video. These days his primary interests are Java, Linux, videogames and pies - and if they're not candidates for convergence, then what is?