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Napster Japan Plans Unveiled

Online music download fans in Japan have two new services to consider today. Besides the announcement about Apple setting up an iTunes store on Sony’s home turf, Napster has also rolled in from across the Pacific with details yesterday about Napster Japan.

Napster Japan, said Napster, is a joint venture with Tower Records Japan. It will be rolled out within the next 12 months. This is the next major market for the American-based music service after past forays into the UK, Canada and the soon to be launched Germany site.

The new venture will be guided by a board of directors chaired by Tower Records Japan CEO Hiroyuki Fushitani.

“Our partnership with Tower Records Japan represents a significant development in the globalization of the digital music industry and one which will take Napster to a new level,” said Chris Gorog, Napster’s chairman and CEO. “Teaming with Japan’s number one music brand and retailer will help ensure Napster Japan reaches a mass audience with a service carefully tailored to local tastes and rich in Japanese repertoire.”

“The decision to partner with Napster was very simple,” said Fushitani. “We believe subscription will be the digital music business model of the future and Napster Japan will expedite our entry into the digital music industry under the name of the most powerful and universally-recognized brand in the business.”

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