Russia To Open The 43rd Midem

The forthcoming edition of MIDEM will open with a special day dedicated to the Russian music industry entitled "Russia! Time for Partnership!". The initiative will cast the spotlight on the broad diversity and huge potential of Russia's music industry through a number of conferences and concerts. Russian day, co organised with trade publication Billboard Russian Edition, will be held on 18 January and culminates with the Opening Night Party for MIDEM, which takes place in Cannes from 18-21 January, 2009. "Russia! Time for Partnership!" will bring together all facets of the Russian music industry at MIDEM to reveal a sector in a phase of strong growth and evolution, in which the key players are keen to develop international partnerships.

Russian talent will be honoured during the Opening Night Party, where some of the country's brightest stars with the biggest export potential will perform. Leading executives from the Russian music industry will also be in Cannes for a range of conferences to outline the characteristics of this market to the global industry. The Russian presence at MIDEM, which has already seen a 70% increase over the last two years, will be boosted by a bigger national pavilion at January 2009's event.

"The Russian music market is complex but never ceases to amaze through its vitality and fantastic potential, particularly in terms of digital and mobile music. Within the MIDEM framework, we are delighted to showcase the full richness of this country where the music sector remains largely unknown. Russia is in a phase of rapid expansion and on its way to becoming a major player and an essential partner for the rest of the industry, " said Dominique Leguern, Director of MIDEM.

"For several years, Russia has been considered as one of the major emerging markets for the music industry. Recent changes in legislation, which have led to new regulations on the market, have helped to fight piracy and foster growth. The "Russia! Time for Partnership!" initiative at MIDEM 2009 will provide a unique occasion for industry professionals to find new opportunities and meet new partners, " said Ilya Buts, Head of Editorial of Billboard Russian Edition.

It is estimated that by the end of 2008, Russia will have the second largest Internet population in Europe after Germany, with more than 40 million subscribers, growth of 72% compared to 2007. In terms of mobile telephony, the Russian market holds fourth place in global rankings behind China, the U.S. and India, with almost 180 million subscribers. While digital music currently only represents between 5-7% of music sales, physical sales are experiencing constant growth, up 10% in 2007 with similar growth forecast for 2008.*

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