Douglas Merill, the former CIO of search Giant Google, has stepped down from his post as the president of digital and COO of EMI's New Music unit, just one year after he joined the company.
The struggling recording company has also announced the promotion of Cory Ondrejka to the newly-created position of executive vice president, digital marketing; Ondrejka is a former Second Life executive, which might provide a clue as to where EMI wants to head.
EMI has little choice but to follow the money and with digital music sales now accounting for nearly a quarter of EMI Music's revenue, the company has chosen to refocus on its core.
Merill's stand alone digital unit has in effect been re-integrated in EMI's business operations. Although Merill did not have any experience in the music industry, it was though that his expertise at Google would help EMI's fortunes.
The departure of the former senior Googler comes a few days after the chief executive of EMI's parent company Terra Firma quit from his day-to-day job, which some might say, was the beginning of the end for Merill's tenure at EMI.
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When Guy Hands purchased EMI, the company was already in deep trouble and the fact that Terra Firma had to write off half of its £2.4 billion investment in EMI looks like some desperate measures are being applied to save the company. The music industry is not doing great from any perspective. The demise of Zavvi and Woolworths combined with the failures of Spiralfrog means that the sector is desperately short on ideas.
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