Claudia Pöpperl
Phone: +44 795 102 71 55
E-Mail: cpoepperl@qpass.com
Tue, 14.02.2006
pts20060214025 Computer/Telecommunications, Commerce/Services
Pressbox Pressbox
Qpass Connects Ministry of Sound to 75 Million Skype Users and Creates New VoIP

London/Barcelona (pts025/14.02.2006/10:57) - Qpass, a leading digital commerce software and solutions company today announced it has expanded its current agreement with Skype to offer Personalise Skype, a service that allows Skype users to include branded music content from iconic UK dance music record label Ministry of Sound (MoS).

Ministry of Sound, the internationally renowned music label and youth lifestyle brand is one of the first major record labels to take advantage of this new distribution channel. Personalise Skype, which Qpass runs as a fully managed service, allows Skype users to customise and download pre-recorded music, voice clips and ringtones. Through Qpass' Digital Commerce Solution MoS now has immediate access to distribute its own music content to Skype's user base of more than 75 million Voice-Over-IP customers.

"If any music majors aren't seriously looking at VoIP as a major sales and distribution channel then they should take a closer look at Skype's pioneering ringtone service. There is a clear consumer demand for branded content on mobile as well as on VoIP," said Chase Franklin, CEO of Qpass. "The ubiquity of VoIP networks makes it extremely cost effective and scalable to sell content services to the global marketplace. This combined with the mass adoption of IP telephony has created a powerful proposition for the music majors."

The music industry is gearing up to take advantage of the potential that VoIP offers as a new worldwide distribution channel and is expected to grow in step with the increase of broadband users across Europe. In-Stat Research reports that the global market for consumer VoIP services has arrived, with total VoIP subscribers worldwide at 16 million in 2005 and projected to grow to over 55 million in 2009 (not including the 75 million registered Skype users). Qpass provides major record labels and media owners with a trusted gateway into this market, creating a secure environment that protects digital rights, provides the tools to effectively merchandise content assets and manages the billing and distribution into this new channel.

"The Ministry of Sound brand has a global following and we are always looking for new channels which can expand our reach into new markets." said, Matt Dicks, Head of Media, Ministry of Sound. "In partnering with Skype, Qpass has helped to create an exciting new distribution channel for the music industry which can only grow and we are delighted to be involved."

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About Qpass
Qpass is a leading digital commerce software and solutions company that enables the buying and selling of digital goods and services over any network. The Qpass Digital Commerce Solution manages hundreds of thousands of content applications and services across mobile, VoIP, and Wi-Fi networks. The company manages the entire digital commerce value chain including content management, merchandising, delivery, billing, settlement and customer care integration.
Qpass customers include Cingular Wireless, T-Mobile International, Vodafone, Sprint, SunCom, Alltel, US Cellular, One and Skype. Qpass serves more than 175 million mobile subscribers and more than 60 million Web portal, Wi-Fi and VoIP users worldwide. Qpass processes tens of millions of premium services transactions per month and has processed more than 400 million premium downloads since inception, representing more than US$ 1 billion in gross retail consumer sales.
Qpass is privately-held and has headquarters in Seattle, Washington, with European offices in London and Vienna. For more information please visit www.qpass.com

About Ministry of Sound

Ministry of Sound opened as a club in London in 1991 and has since established a cult following among dance music lovers worldwide. The club's phenomenal success has been built on the very high quality of its music programming and promotion, its world-renowned custom-built sound system and the distinctive Ministry of Sound logo.

Since clubbing has developed from an underground movement to a mainstream activity influencing the music preferences, style and attitudes of young people, Ministry of Sound has emerged as the unifier of this culture and is now an internationally recognised youth brand.
Ministry of Sound employs in the region of 100 staff across a range of synergistic businesses including recordings, promotions, touring and media ensuring the brand's representation on news-stands, radio stations and in record and clothing stores across the globe. For more information please visit www.ministryofsound.com

Submitter: Qpass
Contact: Claudia Pöpperl
Phone: +44 795 102 71 55
E-Mail: cpoepperl@qpass.com