As previously reported, a fire early yesterday morning in the Enfield neighborhood of London burned a Sony/PIAS distribution warehouse to the ground. The warehouse stored large amounts of CD’s and LP’s from a number of independent record labels affiliated with distributor PIAS (the largest distributor in the UK and Ireland). In the aftermath, both PIAS and a number of labels have begun to discuss the impact of the fire, which was set during the third straight night of London riots.
In an official statement issued last night, PIAS said the following:
Sony DADC have actioned their Business Continuity Plan and are back up and running from a new control room in Enfield. PIAS continue to work with them to minimise the impact on the business, a number one priority for all our labels and clients. Sony DADC have identified a temporary distribution partner and it is envisaged that they will be in a position to pick, pack and ship orders in the course of next week.
This follows an earlier statement regarding a fire last night at the SonyDADC warehouse, which services the physical distribution for PIAS in the UK and Ireland. PIAS’s UK offices in London and all other areas of our business are unaffected.
We will continue to communicate directly with all our labels and partners through the coming hours and days.
We wish to thank everyone for the overwhelming messages of support.
In a conversation with Pitchfork, Martin Mills, the chairman of Beggars Group—an organization that includes Matador, XL, Rough Trade, 4AD, True Panther, Young Turks, and Too Pure—stated that they lost their entire UK stock in the fire, which included a total of 750,000 copies. Mills estimated that it would take about 10 days to replace the CD’s and at least 3 months to replace their stock of vinyl. Beggars Group, as well as many of the other labels, expect to have the majority of their manufacturing losses to be covered through insurance. According to Mills, the biggest issue for many of the independent labels will be what to do “while they don’t have anything to sell.”
The physical release of the forthcoming Arctic Monkeys single “The Hellcat Spangled Shalalala” has been affected by the fire. In an official statement, their label, Domino, revealed that a large amount of their CD and vinyl stock were lost in the fire, and that they are “currently working hard with Sony DADC to maintain our release schedule and keep business going as usual.” A limited quantity of the single is available through the Arctic Monkeys website.
NMe reports that various other independent labels, such as Sonic Cathedral and Transmission, have also lost the majority (if not all) of their physical stock that was stored in the warehouse, as well as many labels’ back-catalog titles.
Though Sony owns the facility that was destroyed, the facility did not handle distribution for any of Sony’s music branch. Sony’s music stock, therefore, was unaffected.