IMAG0440-1-copy1Smart Communications Inc. (Smart) has forged a broad partnership with MCA Music, Inc., a Universal Music Group International (UMGI) company, to offer what it called a “game-changing” online music service.

A first in the world, the deal between the two companies will make more than 3 million tracks in MCA Music’s  global catalog exclusively available to the over 70 million subscribers of Smart and the other mobile brands under the PLDT group, Talk ‘N Text and Sun Cellular.

Smart will start offering content from MCA Music at very affordable rates and convenient terms through “Smart Music”, its new online music portal which instantly becomes the largest digital store of its kind in the country.

Smart Music will offer music downloads for as low as P15 per track – the lowest peso rate in the digital music market today. New releases will be sold at P20 each track –roughly half the comparable rates of other online music stores.

Moreover, subscribers can pay for their downloads by charging these against their prepaid load or their postpaid bill. This eliminates the need to have a credit card, which is a major barrier to many Filipinos who want to purchase legitimate music online.

Smart Music can be accessed via smartphone, tablet or laptop through http://www.smart.com.ph/music.

According to Charles Lim, EVP and head of wireless consumer business for Smart and Sun Cellular, Smart Music is a vital part of the PLDT Group’s multimedia strategy.

“We will rapidly grow our multimedia content offerings in the next few months.  What better way to jumpstart this effort than by offering what’s close to the hearts of Filipinos – music,” said Lim.

“Music is so much a part of Filipinos’ lifestyle. Through our partnership with Universal Music Group (UMGI) and its local company MCA Music, we will enrich our subscribers’ lives by democratizing access to legitimate music and enabling them to keep creating the playlists of their lives in fast, easy and affordable way,” he added.

UMGI and MCA Music welcomed the partnership, citing the company’s own business strategy of offering more of its music tracks online.

“With the number of subscribers Smart has across the country, we’re virtually rolling out millions of retail outlets right in the hands of our consumers,” said Ricky Ilacad, president of MCA Music. “We at UMGI and MCA Music are excited to bring our extensive roster of global and local artists closer to every Filipino music lover.”

Beyond the music content distribution, the partnership also allows for extensive music marketing and branding tie-ups between Smart and MCA Music.

For instance, Smart has the license to use Top 40 and catalog songs in MCA Music’s full library in its promotional activities. For the duration of the partnership, Smart will also be a major presentor of the Philippine concerts of some of MCA Music’s international and local artists.

“Through this partnership, we shall provide Filipinos better access to the best music and the most popular artists here and worldwide,” said Lim.

“In September for example, MCA Music  will bring one of its prime artists Rihanna for a concert here in the Philippines, and Smart will be a major presentor, bringing to the Filipinos not just the show, but the whole music experience through our group’s converged services,” he said.

MCA Music boasts of a music catalog that spans multiple genres across several eras. The record company carries in its labels some of the world’s most popular music superstars like Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber, Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez, Lady Gaga, U2, Black Eyed Peas, Eminem, and more.

MCA Music also carries the license to music’s classic collections like the Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Motown catalogs.

Locally, the MCA Music roster is being headlined by artists like Ely Buendia and his bands Pupil and The Oktaves, Sitti, Nyoy Volante, Urbandub, Franco, ChicoSci and more.

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