eMusic Europe officially launches

Well, it’s old news to us, but according to Reuters eMusic is officially launching its Europe service; it appears that eMusic is trying to take advantage of the hype around Apple’s announcements today to try to position itself as the dominant iTunes alternative in the minds of the mainstream media.

Some interesting new tidbits from the article:

EMusic will be the first service to launch in all 25 European Union member nations, going head-to-head with iTunes in big markets such as Germany and Britain and bringing the first legal downloading to smaller ones including Malta and Hungary. …

… eMusic is also planning to launch local-language download services in Germany, France, Italy and Spain in 2007. …

EMusic worked with Dutch author society Buma/Stemra to create the first pan-European licensing agreement, enabling it to launch in 25 countries simultaneously.

Under the deal, eMusic will track country-by-country sales and pay publishing royalties to Buma/Stemra, which will then distribute them to author societies in other EU nations.

Maybe it’s just the way it’s phrased, but I found this statement amusing as well:

[David Pakman] said eMusic continues to hold talks with [the four major labels], but until they agree to distribute in the MP3 format, it will not carry their songs.

In other words, Hey major labels, you’ll adapt to our business model, we don’t need to adapt to yours!

There’s also (finally) an official eMusic press release on the European launch with more information, including a list of eMusic’s marketing partners in Europe.