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Japan Physical Shipments Buck Trend, Rise

In 2012, physical shipments in Japan bucked world trends, rising in a year-on-year comparison with 2011, according to figures just released by the Record Industry Association of Japan (RIAJ). It was Japan's first year-on-year rise since 1998 and is a reminder of how resilient the Japanese physical market is. more...

Gary Allan Set for First No. 1 Album on Next Week's Billboard 200 Chart

After a Billboard chart career that dates back to 1996, country singer Gary Allan is on course for his first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart. Industry sources suggest that his new release, "Set You Free," may sell around 80,000 to 90,000 copies by the end of the tracking week on Jan. 27. more...

Business Matters: Apple Sets iTunes Record But Misses Bigger Expectations

Apple set a new iTunes record, but fell short of some analysts' expectations when it released its earnings report Wednesday afternoon. The company had record quarterly revenue of $54.5 billion and record quarterly net profit of $13.1 billion in the fourth quarter of 2012 (the company's first fiscal quarter of 2013). more...

Billboard's New iPad App: Try It Now for Free!

Along with our fully revamped glossy magazine, which we unveiled today, Billboard has also introduced the new iPad edition of Billboard -- the complete weekly magazine reinvented for your iPad with interactive extras. Subscribe today to experience this week’s issue absolutely for free! more...

Hilco Buys HMV Debt, Gains Control of Struggling UK Music Retailer

Hilco U.K. has acquired HMV’s debt, effectively placing the retail-restructuring group in control of the troubled U.K. retailer. Hilco, who major labels were said to have favored in the bidding process, previously succeeded in turning around HMV Canada, which faced similar economic hardship.  more...

Welcome to the New Billboard

The Jan. 26 edition of Billboard features a cover-story interview with Prince, but that world exclusive is accompanied by something else: A whole new magazine. This week, Billboard relaunches, and from the new logo on the front cover to the information packed graphic on the back page, the magazine is dedicated to the delivery of business journalism that leads and informs the essential conversations around the music and businesses it covers. more...

Hilco Frontrunner to Acquire HMV as Administrators Bow To Public Pressure Over Gift-Cards

Retail restructuring group Hilco has emerged as the frontrunner to acquire stricken U.K. music and entertainment chain HMV, according to reports. more...

Exclusive: Anne Stanchfield Named Head Music Buyer For Target

Anne Stanchfield has been named divisional merchandise manager of entertainment, making her the retailer's new head of music buying, Billboard has learned. more...

Britney Spears and Beat Out Justin Timberlake, 50 Cent For Top UK Single; 'Les Mis' Has No. 1 Album

Polydor/Universal’s original motion picture cast recording of “Les Miserables” climbed 5-1 on the new U.K. album chart yesterday (Sunday), as “Scream & Shout” (Interscope/Universal) by featuring Britney Spears held off new entries by 50 Cent and Justin Timberlake to start a second week atop the singles survey. more...

Beyonce, Kelly Clarkson, James Taylor May Get Inauguration Sales Bumps

Beyonce, Kelly Clarkson and James Taylor could be set for sales bumps next week after they perform at President Obama's second inauguration in Washington. more...

'Kidz Bop 23' Heading Towards No. 2 Debut on Next Week's Billboard 200 Chart

The "Kidz Bop 23" album is aiming to debut at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 with around 65,000 copies sold by week's end on Jan. 20, according to industry forecasters. Standing in Kidz Bop's way next week will be A$AP Rocky, who is on course for a No. 1 debut with "Long.Live.A$AP." more...

Kroum Pindoff, Philanthropist and Founder of Retail Chain Music World, Dies Aged 97

Kroum Pindoff, the Greek immigrant who came to Canada in 1955 with nothing and built a national record retail empire Music World and rack-jobber Pindoff Record Sales, died in his sleep January 16. He was 97. more...

CD Baby Parent Company AVL Digital Group Sold

AVL Digital Group -- the parent company of CD Baby, Disc Makers and other self-publishing platforms -- has been sold to Stephens Capital Partners, a private equity group based in Little Rock, Arkansas, has learned. more...

NARM Names Muve Music's Jeff Toig, Dimple Records' Dilyn Radakovitz to Board

Muve Music senior VP Jeff Toig and Dimple Records founder and owner Dilyn Radakovitz have joined the board of directors of both NARM, the music business trade association, and, its digital initiatives arm. more...

Amazon Music Looks to Nab iTunes Customers with HTML5 Update for iPhone, iPod Touch

In an escalating battle for digital music customers, has optimized the Amazon MP3 Mobile website for Apple's massively popular iPhone and iPod touch. The optimization should make it easier for Amazon to poach sales from Apple's iTunes Store. more...

HMV Shutters Irish Operations, Appoints Receivers as Staff Stages Sit-In

Staff at two HMV stores in Ireland have staged sit-in protests to secure their wages following the closure of the company’s 16 Irish stores, according to reports. HMV’s Irish operations were placed into receivership 24 hours after the British music retailer HMV confirmed it was suspending the trading of its shares and entering administration, the U.K. equivalent of Chapter 11. more...

New Dance/Electronic Songs Hybrid Chart Highlights a Trio of New Rankings

Billboard is expanding its coverage of the burgeoning dance scene by launching Dance/Electronic Songs, the first-ever ranking of the nation’s top dance songs combining digital download sales (tracked by Nielsen SoundScan), radio airplay (monitored by Nielsen BDS) and streaming data (tracked by BDS from such services as Spotify, Muve, Slacker, Rhapsody, Rdio, MySpace, Xbox Music and Guvera) and reported club play from a select national panel of 140 club DJs. more...

Chris Tomlin Scores First No. 1 Album on Billboard 200 Chart

Singer/songwriter Chris Tomlin claims his first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 as his "Burning Lights" opens atop the list with 73,000 sold, according to Nielsen SoundScan. The Christian music veteran's new set also arrives at No. 1 on the Christian Albums chart, giving Tomlin his fourth leader on that tally. more...

Digital Startups, Developing Market Establishing New African Music Industry

A rising middle class, expanding youthful population and adventurous startups have encouraged majors to see big African cities as new growth opportunities. more...

Morning Fix: UMJ's Koike to Head EMI Japan; Justin Timberlake Single's Fast Start; Facebook's Mystery Announcement

In today's Fix: Universal Music Japan CEO Kazuhiko Koike to head up EMI Japan; Justin Timberlake's long-awaited single "Suit and Tie" gets off to a fast start; today's Facebook mystery announcement; UK's HMV facing bankruptcy; Rolling Stones lead Hot Tours; Greg Sandoval leaving CNET; Arts & Crafts' tenth anniversary; Country Music Association is going to Disneyland Paris; and way more than you could ever fit into the world's largest bagel.   more...

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