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7digital restructures creative offering

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7DIGITAL ANNOUNCES RESTRUCTURE OF ITS ENTERTAINMENT PRODUCTION OFFERING

Smooth Operations, Unique the Production Company and Above the Title to cease operating as distinct brands and instead consolidate under the 7digital brand

7digital, the global leader in end-to-end digital music solutions, today announced a major shake-up that sees its portfolio of entertainment production teams cease operating as individual brands and unify instead under the 7digital name and brand.

Since acquiring three leading independent production teams in 2014 through its merger with UBC Media (Unique Broadcasting Company), a business previously co-founded and led by current 7digital CEO Simon Cole and Tim Blackmore, 7digital has been responsible for the output of some of the country’s best-loved and most famous radio shows. The company creates over 1,000 hours of content every year.

Smooth Operations is the award-winning production company which delivers high quality music programming and live events as well as running its own record label, Delphonic. Notable work includes the daily production of the Radcliffe and Maconie show on BBC Radio 6 Music and the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards. Unique The Production Company – which has operated for over 25 years – is known for working on (and devising formats for) a variety of radio and television shows for the likes of BBC Radio 2 (Pick of the Pops, Sounds of the Sixties) and BBC Radio 3 (Jazz Now), whilst Above the Title specialises in spoken word programming across entertainment and factual genres.

As of today, all three will now operate as one production team under the 7digital name.

Meanwhile, Entertainment News – the largest syndicated showbiz provider in the UK with an audience of over 9m people weekly* – will remain a distinct brand and part of 7digital’s Creative function. In addition to production capabilities for radio, TV, live and online, the group also includes in-house expertise in creative services for digital music services, such as editorial, merchandising, playlist creation and music recommendations.

7digital’s Creative division has grown in recent years to over 25 employees (and a network of freelancers) based across both London and Salford, dedicated to delivering innovative solutions in creative content across radio, TV, events and online. One of 7digital’s teams in Northern England, currently based in Delph (Greater Manchester), will be moving in the coming weeks to a new office in Salford’s MediaCityUK.

Kellie While, Head of 7digital Creative, commented on the move: “This is just one of the ways that 7digital is reacting and adapting to a fast-changing industry with evolving – and increasingly demanding - production needs. Combining our production teams and their individual expertise will allow us to take an even more holistic approach to our clients’ briefs and ensure that they have the creativity and innovation needed to keep today’s audiences coming back for more. It is very much a positive move and arguably an overdue one for the company – we look forward to building the 7digital brand further over the coming years.”

Simon Cole, CEO of 7digital, added: “Our radio heritage and creative content is a key differentiator for 7digital - it puts our leading technology platform at the heart of a business which understands the importance of the way content is curated and presented to an audience. Bringing together our creative and technology capabilities under one banner demonstrates our real value to clients, whether they are traditional broadcasters requiring our production skills or companies that need to enhance their digital music services with bespoke content.”

Find out more about 7digital’s creative services at: https://vimeo.com/203839222

*9.34 million listeners per week (Source: RAJAR Q4 2016)

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History

2004

  • The company was founded by Ben Drury and James Kane, offering digital music delivery B2B services. In the year following, 7digital was powering 180 stores for record labels and brands. Our fastest release ever was 46 mins from on-stage performance to sale in Dec 2005 as part of the Live 8 Guinness World Record.

2007

  • 7digital was powering 1,000 stores and made history by enabling Koopa to become the first unsigned act to make it into the top 40 charts on downloads alone. 7digital-powered service Now Play It won “Best Digital Service” award at the BT Digital Music Awards. 7digital signed a partnership with Last.fm and celebrated their first 1 million users on the platform. In 2008 7digital launched the global API and became the first European download store to offer Warner Music catalogue DRM-free.

2009

  • 7digital launched HMV music and video download stores in the UK and Canada, as well as an e-book store for Waterstones. Lost Tunes, powered by 7digital, won the ”Digital Achievement of the Year“ award at the Music Week Awards. We partnered with Songbird to provide an integrated MP3 store and built a mobile app on BlackBerry, which won the EMEA ”Innovation Award“. 7digital integrated MP3 downloads into AOL’s Winamp media player, HMV Group acquired 50% stake in 7digital for £7.7 million, we took part in the first ever Music Hack Day in London and celebrated 7 million tracks our catalogue.

2012

  • 7digital partnered with Shazam, we launched our own Android and iOS apps and developed a unique digital music experience for Samsung devices. Network operator O2 chose 7digital as their digital music partner in the UK and 7digital’s API powered services for 120 clients with 500 million API requests served.

    In the following years 7digital expanded North American operations with key hires and launched Samsung Music Hub 3.0 in numerous territories. 7digital was selected as the music partner for Toshiba connected TV and we released the first digital music store on Windows 8.

2014

  • 7digital merged with award-winning radio company, UBC Media and went public on the LSE. We launched hi-res download stores for Panasonic and Onkyo, a Latin music radio service for SBS (Spanish Broadcasting System) and we confirmed a partnership with will.i.am.

2015

  • 7digital powered the launch of The Overflow, a genre-based streaming app, and we expanded territories for Radioplayer Worldwide. We announced that we are powering services for OpenLIVE, Tonlist, Electric Jukebox, Team Rock, CrowdTunes, Rithm, and Astro. We expanded licenses to Africa making our reach a total of 82 territories. Finally, we launched an integration with Google Cast to playback hi-res audio.

2016

  • 7digital started the year by premiering MQA content on onkyomusic at CES. We announced a new contract to power the relaunch of eMusic and won the tender to produce Jazz programmes for BBC Radio 3. We acquired French B2B streaming service Snowite (now 7digital France) and have brought on a number of new key hires. We launched 7digital Creative to look after curation, radio production, editorial and playlisting services for our partners.