(UPDATED) With the arrival of a new investor, music subscription service Rhapsody has let go of 30 employees, 15% of total staff. President John Irwin is exiting that post but will stay on as an adviser. Also out is CFO Adi Dehejia, who will be replaced by Ethan Rudin, a former Starbucks corporate development executive. Rhapsody's downsizing and leadership shift comes just one day before Apple's iTunes Radio launches.
Rhapsody operates as Napster in Europe.
Ths changes are being lead by new investor Columbus Nova Technology Partners, who also own the Rock Band game franchise. Two of its principals, Jason Epstein and Andrew Intrater, to the Rhapsody board. The company has formed an executive operating committee consisting of Rhapsody executives Brian Ringer, CTO, Paul Springer, SVP Americas, Thorsten Schliesche, SVP Europe and new CFO Ethan Rudin.
Despite growing competition, investors Columbus Nova remains bullish. "Rhapsody International is poised for tremendous growth. We've recently launched the Napster music streaming service in 15 additional countries in Europe, rolled out a partnership with MTV in conjunction with German wireless carrier ePlus and have a strong pipeline of product innovations and global partnerships in place," CNTP's Epstein said.
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