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Standardized framework for the licensing of sound recordings in Europe: BIEM president Georg Oeller signs a new Standard Contract with the IFPI

The international organization representing mechanical rights societies (BIEM) and the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) have signed a new Standard Contract. As a result, standardized conditions for the licensing of physical sound recordings will continue to exist in Europe in the future.

“By signing the new contract, we have been able to standardize the basis for the licensing of sound recordings in Europe once more. Clear international structures will allow us to continue safeguarding royalties for our copyright holders,” said GEMA executive board member Georg Oeller, who was elected president of the BIEM (Bureau International des Sociétés Gérant les Droits d’Enregistrement ET de Reproduction Mécanique) in June 2013. The new contract is of particular importance because the previous contract expired a long time ago. “It would not have been possible to agree on this new contract without the consistent negotiations conducted by my predecessors Thierry Desurmont and Ronald Mooij,” Oeller added.

BIEM deals exclusively with the rights for the physical reproduction of sound and audio-visual recordings. One of its main tasks is to negotiate the framework conditions for the licensing of physical sound recordings with the IFPI and to stipulate these conditions in an international agreement known as the BIEM-IFPI Standard Contract. In turn, this agreement forms the basis for the national contracts in all BIEM member states.

Despite developments in the music market, the mechanical audio segment is still a relevant market today. Labels in Germany continue to generate over two-thirds of their revenue from the sale of physical sound recordings. The task of the BIEM and the collecting societies organized under its auspices is to monitor developments on the market for physical sound recordings and to make changes that are acceptable to copyright holders.

GEMA represents the copyrights of more than 65,000 members in Germany (composers, lyricists, and music publishers), as well as over two million copyright holders all over the world. It is one of the largest societies of authors for musical works. (www.gema.de)

BIEM was founded in 1929 and represents 52 organizations working in mechanical reproduction rights across 56 countries. (www.biem.org)

IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry) represents the recording industry worldwide with some 1300 members in 66 countries and affiliated industry associations in 55 countries. (www.ifpi.org)

Press contact:
Ursula Goebel, Head of Marketing & Communication
E-mail: ugoebel@gema.de, Tel.: +49 89 48003-426

Katharina Reindlmeier, PR Manager
E-mail: kreindlmeier@gema.de; Tel: +49 89 48003-583

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