EMI Classics taps new president

Eric Dingman will take up role in January

LONDON -- EMI Classics has recruited Eric Dingman to the global role of president, effective in January.

Toronto-born Dingman previously worked at WPP, the international marketing and advertising group, and his background is in senior brand marketing and business development. He also has experience in marrying the creative and commercial sectors, including seven years working with the Toronto International Film Festival on behalf of its main sponsor, Labatt Breweries.

Dingman will be based in London and in Paris, where Virgin Classics is located, and report to Ernesto Schmitt, EMI Music's president of catalog. "With his great passion for music and culture and his deep understanding of consumer behavior, Eric is the ideal person to drive EMI Classics forward at this time of unparalleled change and opportunity," Schmitt said.

Dingman added: "I'm thrilled to be joining EMI Classics, and it is very exciting to do so when there is a renewed focus on growth. EMI Classics is a fantastic company with an unrivalled catalog and partnerships with so many of the world's leading recording artists -- from established greats like Sir Simon Rattle and the Berliner Philharmoniker to exciting up and coming musicians such as Quatuor Ebene and David Fray.

"There is so much we can do to open up EMI's fine classical repertoire in more relevant and accessible ways thereby enhancing fan interest in the classical genre."

In 2006, Dingman became interim CEO at Research International, a London-based research agency within WPP's Kantar Group, whose clients include Coca Cola, Unilever and HSBC. Last year he was tasked with leading the strategic review of Kantar's global operations.