H.I.M., NIGHTWISH, APOCALYPTICA Confirmed For MIDEM 2006 Opening Night Party

MIDEM, the world's music market (Cannes, January 22 – 26, 2006) has announced that Finland will co-host the prestigious opening night party for MIDEM's special 40th anniversary edition. The event will present a number of leading Finnish bands and artists live on stage and will take place in the Palais des Festivals on Sunday, January 22.

The Finnish opening night is co-organized by the newly established trade association Music Export Finland and has received the support of the Finnish Ministries of Trade and Industry, Education/Culture and the Foreign Ministry.

"In recent years the Finnish music industry has gone from strength to strength and shows a very healthy overall growth in the export of its music," noted Dominique Leguern, MIDEM Director. "This past year has been exceptional for Finland. They have launched a number of top-level artists and have been very astute in the ways that they have marketed and promoted these artists abroad. For example; THE RASMUS, NIGHTWISH, H.I.M. and APOCALYPTICA have all enjoyed very significant success in Europe. It is a pleasure to welcome them as honoured co-hosts of our special 40th anniversary opening night party."

Paulina Ahokas, Music Export Finland Director adds, "The average growth in total market value for Finland's music exports over recent years has risen an amazing 31%. Over the past 12 months three Finnish artists reached top positions in Billboard's 'European Border Breaker Charts,' the overall result surpassed that of any other European country. Billboard's chart tracks album sales outside the country of origin, throughout Europe."

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Paulina Ahokas further commented, "Because of our current success and also because of the importance of such an established international event such as MIDEM, we felt that the time was right for Finland to co-host this high profile evening for the international music community and show that we intend to continue to make our mark on the global music business scene."

A record total of 30 exhibiting Finnish companies and 51 registered companies attended MIDEM 2005, which represents a rise of 43% and 16% respectively on the previous edition of MIDEM. It is expected that the number of Finnish participants will continue to grow for MIDEM 2006.

The 39th edition of MIDEM, which took place in Cannes, January 23–27, 2005, welcomed over 9,300 industry professionals, a 6% increase on 2004. 92 countries were represented and confirmed MIDEM's international status. The 4,367 participating companies represented a 4% rise on 2004.

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