LONDON (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — As Sanctuary Music Group picks up speed in its downward trajectory; it is leaving major changes for the European music industry in it's wake. As previously reported in CelebrityAccess, CAA is considering opening a London-based office, hoping to provide refuge for some of the major players who are starting to feel the financial insecurity at companies under the Sanctuary umbrella, such as Helter Skelter, with most insiders telling CelebrityAccess that its already a done deal.
Major players such as the previously reported-on (See the CelebrityAccess article entitled "CAA & WMA Opening Music Departments In London? Mike Greek & Emma Banks Jumping Ship?") Emma Banks and Mike Greek being rumored to shift to CAA's new London offices. Industry insiders also expect Merck Mercuriadis to join Azoff & Kaufman at Frontline, and there are also rumors surrounding possible departures for Rod Smallwood and Craig Jennings.
The departure of two agents like Banks and Greek, who represent a strong roster of talent including names such as The Red Hot Chili Peppers, Sheryl Crow, Nine Inch Nails, Franz Ferdinand, David Grey and Arcade Fire, leaving Helter Skelter could be the beginning of the end for the agency.
The departure of Smallwood would be a very significant indicator for the possible future of Sanctuary. Smallwood was a co-founder, with Andy Taylor, of Sanctuary records. Smallwood was well-known for his tight-fisted approach to business, as alluded to in the song by Iron Maiden (One of his longtime clients who's contract with Sanctuary recently expired) "Sheriff of Huddersfield" in which he was likened to the legendary Sheriff of Nottingham. Reports of his having already departed however, are exaggerated.
William Morris, who has long maintained a small London office is reportedly trying to expand it's foothold there. William Morris impresarios Marc Geiger & Peter Grosslight have reportedly held unproductive talks with the Helter Skelter's Emma Banks and Mike Greek but they might have gained some traction with Ed Bicknell former manager for Dire Straits.
There have also been rumors that Paradigm is also looking to get into the action but according to CelebrityAccess's sources, these rumors are entirely unfounded.
This isn't the first round of defections from troubled Helter Skelter/Sanctuary Music Group. Early in 2005, Jeff Craft and Ian Huffam left Helter Skelter to set up X-Ray Touring with Martin Horne and Scott Thomas from ITB. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers.