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XM Canada Settles With Royalty Groups

Company commits to payment schedule with SOCAN, NRCC and CSI; litigation settled

XM Canada has reached an agreement with various rights groups over royalty payments.

We reported last week that SOCAN — the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada — along with other royalty groups had sued XM Canada over the money.

The Copyright Board of Canada approved royalties in April to be paid to SOCAN by both XM Canada and Sirius Satellite Radio Canada. Royalties dating to July 2005 were due on July 31 of this year. SOCAN told the Globe and Mail last week that XM Canada has paid interest on the amount owed but intends to start paying on the principal in September 2010; that’s why it and the other groups took legal action.

The satcaster this week said the agreement covers payment of all arrears that XM Canada owed under the retroactive tariff and on-going monthly payments under the existing tariff. The settlement “resolves the existing litigation between the parties,” according to the satcaster.

In addition to SOCAN, other royalty groups covered under the deal are the Neighbouring Rights Collective of Canada and CSI, a joint venture of the Canadian Musical Reproduction Rights Agency Ltd. and Montreal-based Society for Reproduction Rights of Authors, Composers and Publishers in Canada.

“We recognize the important role these organizations play in supporting Canadian artists and this agreement allows us to balance the retroactive amount owed with the ongoing investment required to continue building on our own success,” stated XM Canada President/CEO Michael Moskowitz.