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New home for former Arbiter-distributed brands

test 10 March 2009

UK: London-based 2twenty2 will tackle the tricky MI business, writes David Davies. The newly established music technology sales agency is headed up by directors Stephen Parker and Greg Prendergast, and operations manager Cedric Coudyser, all of whom previously worked for Arbiter Group, which entered into administration in late January.

Former Arbiter-handled brands Native Instruments, Celemony, Arturia and EKS have already transferred their sales and brand management to the new business.

Managing director Stephen Parker, who was previously head of Arbiter’s Music Technology division, tells PSN-e: “We started talking to suppliers as soon as the demise of Arbiter was apparent. It’s great that we are able to concentrate on these four brands [for now], and as for adding additional brands, we will see what happens. There is no urgency or need to grab other brands at this moment.”

Newly developed products that will be supported by 2twenty2 include Native’s Maschine Groove Production Studio and Arturia’s Origin hardware unit.

While optimistic about future growth, Parker and his colleagues are under no illusions about the present state of the MI business. “It’s going to be tough, but retailing in the MI industry has been tough for some time anyway,” he says. “As long as we have the right products – which I am sure we have – and new releases as well, then I think we should do reasonably well.”

Providing a manufacturer perspective, Native Instruments’ international sales director, Jan Stammnitz, commented: “2twenty2 represents profound, long-standing experience both within the UK market and with NI products. We’re thrilled about this co-operation, and we are confident that it will serve British retailers and customers in the best possible way.”

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