Sina Offers Some Free Music Downloads In China
March 19, 2007 at 5:50 AM (PT)
SHANGHAI DAILY reports EMI GROUP, SONY BMG and the world's biggest record companies are offering free online music by BEYONCE KNOWLES and JOHN LENNON in CHINA to tap advertisers in a market where 80% of songs are pirated.
SINA CORP., CHINA's biggest web portal, sells advertising next to the music streams, which can't be downloaded to personal computers, CEO CHARLES CHAO said yesterday in a telephone interview from BEIJING.
Ad revenue will be shared with the record companies, which include WARNER MUSIC GROUP, UNIVERSAL MUSIC GROUP and TAIWAN's ROCK RECORDS, he said. The agreement with SHANGHAI-based SINA will help the record companies win a share of the CHINESE online ad market, while guarding against piracy that they said cost them $410 million in potential sales in 2005, BLOOMBERG NEWS reported.
"We see a lot of potential in music," CHAO said. "Fee-based music services haven't really caught on in CHINA, but there are other ways to make money from the demand for music."