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Eric Nicoli, who was moved on as CEO of EMI Group in last year’s takeover by Terra Firma, is ending his year out of business by joining two other music firms. He is investing in and becoming chair of R&R Music, a new label startup founded in June, Times reports. He is also becoming an adviser to Nick Stewart & Associates, a music industry marketing consultancy founded by the man who signed U2 to Island Records and which still counts the band, Neil Diamond and Tim Rice as clients. Nicoli’s also investing in the company.
Terra Firma has characterised Nicoli as running EMI in to the ground and failing to reshape it for the digital age, but it was Nicoli who made EMI the first of the majors to try DRM-free in a major way. EMI itself is getting on with its job, appointing the COO of its Capitol Music Group, Jeff Kempler, to the new role of COO for A&R labels in north America, UK and Ireland within EMI Music.