Thursday, January 17, 2008

EMI lose its digital pilot

One of the brighter sparks for EMI since Terra Firma took over has been that its approached the digital marketplace with a new confidence. The man who's been driving EMI's digital strategy, pioneering a relaxed view of DRM free tracks, for example, has been Barney Wragg.

Has been is key here: he's quit, apparently unhappy with the plans unveiled this week would have seen him taking less of a strategic role.

So, who is going to replace him? Someone else who understands digital?

Not quite: the new head of digital is to be Mark Hodgkinson. Up until now, he's been doing something with marketing - a field in which EMI hasn't been doing that well.

So, as Hands starts swinging to cut off what appears to be a surprising amount of dead wood from the firm, he's also managed to displace one of the few people who actually understands where music is going.

It's bloody lucky EMI doesn't have shareholders any more, isn't it?