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Bates 141 partners with MTV to host Music ChangePanel

18 August, 2008

Singapore – Bates 141, in partnership with MTV, today hosted a "ChangePanel" to discuss how the music scene in Asia is changing and the implications for brands using music as a platform for sponsorship.

A ChangePanel is a round table discussion of experts – in this case, music opinion leaders and professionals – who debate how a topic is changing the way people think, live and shop, and its implications for brands.

The panel was jointly moderated in front of a live audience, by Frederique Covington, Regional Executive Strategic Planning Director, Bates 141, and Ian Stewart, Senior Vice President, MTV Networks Asia.

The panelists comprised of industry experts including Connie Lai, General Manager Sony BMG Singapore, Charmayne Yap, Live Nation Asia, Awy Julianto, Jamba Asia Pac, Denise Marsh, CEO Singapore Indoor Stadium, alongside music consultants including Brian Tiong, b-side, Paul Tan, rightclicka, and Mishal Varma from Dark Horse Entertainment.

To kick off the discussion, a short film produced by Bates 141 was played, featuring a series of interviews with music opinion leaders, professionals such as VJs, top local DJs and party organizers, as well as the most discerning listeners of music – urban and semi-urban Asian youths aged 16 to 27.

The film outlined the ten key changes in the music scene in Asia:
1. From being spoon-fed music to discovering music.
2. From millions of listeners to millions of DJs.
3. From music as a commodity to music as extraordinary.
4. From music as entertainment to music as targeting.
5. From Asian copycats to new Asia sounds.
6. From western labels to Asian music brands.
7. From playing local to selling global.
8. From music labels to brand labels.
9. From your audience to their party.
10. From music sponsorship to incidental branding.

The panelists then discussed these changes and how they are challenging the way music sponsorship is being handled.

Said Frederique, “music has always been a popular medium for brand communications. Now with the explosion of music delivery and sharing systems such as YouTube, Guitar Hero,, iPods, and MP3 capability built into mobile phones, brand marketers are finding it increasingly complicated to reach their audiences.”

“As if this change of music platforms was not dizzying enough, music tastes in Asia are also forcing re-appraisal of the kinds of genres and acts marketers should be involved with. Increasingly, youths want to listen to music from their own culture, seeking new Asian sounds and Asian DJs. We're clearly at an inflection point as today's brands have the opportunity to become the new music labels of tomorrow, and this is a complete re-think of what music sponsorship has been all about,” added Frederique.

Said Ian, "MTV is very happy to be involved with this event and supports the trends that Bates 141 has successfully brought to life. Now more than ever the music industry needs to assess the changes that are occurring across the entire content ecosystem, and rally around the fans and the artists to deliver music in all shapes and forms. We have chosen this panel of experts as a reflection of many of the key stakeholders in this critical mission."

In his welcome speech, Peter Skalberg, Chief Executive Officer, Bates 141
Singapore, and Regional Director, Southeast Asia, said, "as The Change
Agency, our job is to spot, understand and leverage change for our clients' brands. Bates 141 has developed an extensive thought leadership toolkit comprised of different proprietary techniques for tracking change in the marketplace.”

“ChangePanels are part of this tool kit to gather insight and provide a first hand opportunity to participate in, understand and gain valuable information on the dynamics and learnings within categories relevant to brands,” added Peter.

About Bates 141 (  
Bates 141 is the world’s largest Asia-devoted marketing communications network. Bates 141 is part of WPP, one of the world’s leading communications services groups. Bates 141 is located in 15 countries across Asia Pacific.

Bates 141 focuses exclusively on the growing demands of Asian business: namely, building sustainable brands with global ambition and potential.

Bates 141’s clients include among others, AIG, Audi, Bayer, BMW, Cheung Kong, Dell, E-Trade, Google, Fiat, Heineken, HSBC, Huawei, IKEA, Jollibee, LG Electronics, Mengniu, Pizza Hut, Remy, Shanghai General Motors, Shell, Telkom Indonesia, Uni-President and Virgin Mobile.

We are The Change Agency. We believe that brands with a future must embrace change. Our clients pay us to understand, leverage and create change, and our currency - ideas - must change people.

For more information, please contact:
Desiree Lim
Corporate Communications Manager
Bates 141
DID: +852 2103 6261
Cell: +852 9770 4693
Fax: +852 2527 4086

Acrobat Document bates141_pressrelease_changepanel_aug08_guid6e798e.pdf

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