(CelebrityAccess News Service) — Universal Music Group (UMG) has forged a major agreement with eBay, the world's online marketplace. The alliance establishes eBay as a new strategic online retail channel for UMG and brings eBay enthusiasts unprecedented access to music from the world's largest music company, as well as artist memorabilia and unique opportunities to meet UMG's artists.
"Universal Music Store," UMG's new eBay store, will serve as a hub for large-scale weekly online sales and auction promotions, offering new releases, catalog music, artist memorabilia, including signed instruments, records, and lyric sheets, and exclusive experiential opportunities, such as concert tickets, backstage passes and invitations to video shoots. In addition to new release promotions, the store will also feature hard-to-find music from Universal artists that typically has not been available to fans through traditional retail channels.
The first promotion began October 16, featuring a mix of one-of-a-kind items. On the block over the next month will be Bon Jovi's signed guitars and handwritten lyrics, front row tickets to Jay-Z's upcoming performance at Madison Square Garden, and a personal drum lesson with Nickelback drummer Ryan Vikedal.
The online store will provide fans with access to classic catalog records and vinyl, ranging from Jimi Hendrix's "Are You Experienced?" to John Coltrane's "Live at Birdland," as well as autographed box sets from UMG artists. Twelve-inch singles and imports will also be offered through the store. eBay music fans will be able to place bids or purchase these items at a fixed price.
UMG will reach eBay's 75 million registered users through prominent online promotion on the eBay site, and through numerous cross-marketing activities.
"Through our collaboration, Universal can now tap into eBay's loyal user base and connect more fans to the music they love," said Bruce Resnikoff, president, Universal Music Enterprises. "This new relationship enables us to provide passionate music fans with a one-stop shopping experience where they can purchase the music and memorabilia of some of their favorite artists."
"Universal Music Group boasts many of the best artists in the music business and represents the first major record label to establish a formal agreement with eBay. We are thrilled to team up with Universal, bringing their music to fans on eBay," said Mike Aufricht, vice president and general manager of eBay Entertainment. "Through our relationship with UMG, eBay music enthusiasts and collectors will have unparalleled access to a broad range of items, including new releases, rare finds, mementos, tickets, and once-in-a-lifetime personal experiences with their favorite bands." –Bob Grossweiner and Jane Cohen