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#1928339 - 07/18/12 01:58 AM Save Sibelius!
Nikolas Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5302
Loc: Europe
This is not about spam, nor I work for the company. But there's a lot going on and I think that musicians, composers, copyists, etc, should know about it.

http://www.facebook.com/SaveSibelius

Even if you don't use Sibelius and don't care about notation software, be aware that the closing of the offices in the uk, and firing Daniel Spreadbury (an amazing person, truly) will probably halt all Sibelius development and eventually the development of other software (no rivals means no competition, and no competition means no improvement... frown ).

Even if you don't care about the software, consider that without Sibelius Editions Musica Ferrum would have published thus far around 13 titles, instead of 29, and half of what's coming in the next months! Simple as that! frown

Originally Posted By: facebook page
In July 2012, Avid Technology announced the closure of Sibelius UK, home of the Sibelius development and support team. Avid claims this will make no difference to Sibelius. Nothing could be further from the truth. Click "About" to read on...
Description
Sibelius is a music composing/arranging application designed by the Sibelius Team in the UK Office. The UK Office is closing, and the programmers and designers who have made Sibelius a major success will not be able to further develop the best computer based composing/arranging application in existence today.

We implore those of you who use this marvelous composing application to write the board here:
http://ir.avid.com/contactBoard.cfm

The direct email addresses for the CEO and other Avid VP/Directors are:

Gary Greenfield (CEO): gary.greenfield@avid.com

Martin Kloiber (VP Live Systems and Consoles at Avid Technology): martin.kloiber@avid.com

Dana Ruzicka (VP Strategic Alliances at Avid Technology): dana.ruzicka@avid.com

Ian Bruce (Worldwide Director of Corporate Communications): ian.bruce@avid.com

and the AVID Blog:
http://community.avid.com/blogs/avid/archive/2012/07/07/sibelius-community.aspx

Based on its latest published figures, Avid is in financial trouble. Right after the most recent stockholders meeting, all the Avid board of directors sold significant shares of stock, clearly a co-ordinated sale. Simultaneously, several key executives resigned, including Vice President, CFO and CTO. Avid is short of cash and desperately trying to shore up its liquidity with reckless cost cutting.

Sibelius is viable as a standalone company, but without sustained pressure from its users, Avid will try to run it offshore, most likely in the Ukraine. This short-term thinking is solely to ease Avid through its present cash crisis, not in any way for the benefit of Sibelius users. In fact it will effectively destroy Sibelius.

Please help us to persuade Avid that it is in everyone’s best interests for them to sell Sibelius to a third party as soon as possible. This will still ease its cash crisis, but will ensure Sibelius lives on in safe hands.
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#1928350 - 07/18/12 02:30 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
FSO Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/03/12
Posts: 854
Loc: UK, Brighton
They fired Dan? That's...shocking! He was so nice...such a shame...
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#1928356 - 07/18/12 02:39 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
Nikolas Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5302
Loc: Europe
I don't think they've fired him just yet, but they're about it.

And I did tell them (as pretty much everyone I know) that Sibelius IS Daniel! without him I wouldn't be using Sibelius!
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#1928377 - 07/18/12 04:10 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6112
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
I really hope that they don't fire Daniel and that Sibelius will assert itself! I love both!
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Music is my best friend.


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#1928395 - 07/18/12 05:17 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7892
Over and over again, decent and viable small companies are taken over by predatory larger companies, and then their product is run into the ground, and the staff with the deepest knowledge of it is laid off.

It is the magic of the omniscient marketplace in action...how could one ever be so bold as to question the majesty of its workings?

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#1928408 - 07/18/12 07:28 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: wr]
Damon Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/22/06
Posts: 6168
Loc: St. Louis area
A cycle that can be avoided by remaining a private company.
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#1928439 - 07/18/12 09:33 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
Steve Chandler Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/18/05
Posts: 2760
Loc: Urbandale, Iowa
I remember about a year ago thinking that Avid (which was originally a video editing software company) having taken over Pro Tools, M-Audio and Sibelius could have extensive synergies or (if they're incompetent) have over extended themselves. Anyone tracking the performance of AVID (that's the stock ticker) would see that things have been going badly for about 3 years. MakeMusic owner of Finale (MMUS) has done marginally better over the same time period (both are public companies). Avid recently sold off M-Audio to raise cash. Closing down Sibelius implies they couldn't find a buyer for that part of the company. Avid was strongest when it was just the professional video and music production platforms (Avid and Pro Tools) and getting back to that may be what they're aiming to do now.

My personal viewpoint is Sibelius was the best thing to happen to Finale. The competitive pressure made Finale a far better product and more attention was paid to usability. Though I don't use Sibelius I would be sad to see the company go out of business. Apparently closing the UK office is essentially a death sentence, but I don't believe their salvation lies with Avid. Their best bet is to find some capital and take themselves private again.

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#1928534 - 07/18/12 12:44 PM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Steve Chandler]
kck Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/04/10
Posts: 268
Oh no! We were hoping to buy Sibelius very soon just for home use (have a kid interested in composition that used it at a piano camp and loved it). Not sure what to do now. frown
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#1928540 - 07/18/12 01:05 PM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
Jeff Clef Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/08
Posts: 4425
Loc: San Jose, CA
"...Over and over again, decent and viable small companies are taken over by predatory larger companies, and then their product is run into the ground..."

Baldwin, to mention only one.
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#1928634 - 07/18/12 04:34 PM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6112
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
To be honest, I remember that when I heard about Avid last year or so I was not happy at all, although I didn't really think they would try to completely take it over just a few months later. mad
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#1928679 - 07/18/12 05:49 PM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
Dave Horne Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/07/04
Posts: 5277
Loc: Vught, The Netherlands
I thought they sold the company years ago.
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#1928837 - 07/19/12 01:15 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
Nikolas Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5302
Loc: Europe
Sibelius was sold to Avid in 2006, if not mistaken. But Avid (and pro-tools is a proof of that) managed to destroy pretty much anything audio under their wings... frown
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#1928838 - 07/19/12 01:20 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Steve Chandler]
argerichfan Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8903
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: Steve Chandler

My personal viewpoint is Sibelius was the best thing to happen to Finale. The competitive pressure made Finale a far better product and more attention was paid to usability.

The early versions of Finale from the '90's were terribly anti-user friendly according to two older friends (one used it on a Mac, the other in Windows 3.1) of mine who used the program.
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#1928842 - 07/19/12 01:32 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: argerichfan]
Nikolas Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5302
Loc: Europe
Originally Posted By: argerichfan
Originally Posted By: Steve Chandler

My personal viewpoint is Sibelius was the best thing to happen to Finale. The competitive pressure made Finale a far better product and more attention was paid to usability.

The early versions of Finale from the '90's were terribly anti-user friendly according to two older friends (one used it on a Mac, the other in Windows 3.1) of mine who used the program.
Hmm... I remember Finale 4.0 or something and then came Finale 98 which was pretty much like the current one! :P

I've been using finale since about that time (which is almost 15 years now... WOW), and I have to say that very few things have changed in terms of work techniques. The tools remain the same and so does the basic ideas. There are a few things which are great time savers (the linked parts and the fact that you can double click on an item, thus choosing the right tool straight away, as well as something close to the magnetic tool of Sibelius), but other than that I work pretty much the same way I worked 15 years ago! laugh

(And I should confess that Finale 2009 (or 2010?) has parts of 16-bit code in it, which meant that it would NEVER see my 6 GBs or RAM and I had to manually remove the 4 in order for it to see the proper RAM and install! Funny stuff...)
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#1928847 - 07/19/12 01:54 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
argerichfan Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/15/06
Posts: 8903
Loc: Pacific Northwest, US.
Originally Posted By: Nikolas

I've been using finale since about that time (which is almost 15 years now... WOW), and I have to say that very few things have changed in terms of work techniques.

Interesting. I just recall that my two friends found the program quite a challenge. The Mac user was transcribing some Beach Boys songs, the Windows user was a composition student.

Full disclosure, I have not used Finale myself. During my uni years, I studied and composed a fair amount of church music for the Anglican rite (canticles, anthems, hymn descants, some psalm settings), but they were always done -horrors- the old fashioned way.

Funny how it goes, though. After uni my muse (whoever she was) took a hike and I have written litterally nothing since then.
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#1928850 - 07/19/12 02:07 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6112
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
I find Sibelius more user-friendly, although my very first program was Finale Notepad even before I had a real instrument!!
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Music is my best friend.


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#1928854 - 07/19/12 02:12 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
Nikolas Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5302
Loc: Europe
I'm a long time Finale user, but I'm ready to admit that I believe that Sibelius is more user friendly.

But I also think that finale, still has a few capabilities that sibelius doesn't have... Some things are very difficult to do (close to impossible) in Sibelius, while Finale has these things a bit easier.

The other thing that bugs me with Sibelius is that its SO user friendly that everything is ready made and most users go with the default options, which leaves quite a bit to be desired! And this also means that a lot of scores look alike in Sibelius. In Finale the beginning (if you go for the default doc) is SO crude that you are forced to work your way in the layout!
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#1928859 - 07/19/12 02:37 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
Evan R. Murphy Offline
Full Member

Registered: 10/01/11
Posts: 42
Loc: Austin, Texas
I'm a Sibelius user and troubled by this news. I hadn't known of Daniel Spreadbury before, but it sounds like he really is the heart and soul of the project. Just started reading his tweets at @dspreadbury:

Quote:
Thanks to everybody who has expressed concern for me and my colleagues today. It means a lot!


Quote:
@Stonewing No divestment, but it is closing our office and moving development elsewhere. Future of everybody in our office is unclear.


Guess this is real, huh :-/
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#1928896 - 07/19/12 05:55 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
currawong Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/15/07
Posts: 5944
Loc: Down Under
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
Hmm... I remember Finale 4.0 or something and then came Finale 98 which was pretty much like the current one! :P

I've been using finale since about that time (which is almost 15 years now... WOW), and I have to say that very few things have changed in terms of work techniques. The tools remain the same and so does the basic ideas. There are a few things which are great time savers (the linked parts and the fact that you can double click on an item, thus choosing the right tool straight away, as well as something close to the magnetic tool of Sibelius), but other than that I work pretty much the same way I worked 15 years ago! laugh
Is now the time to confess I use Finale 3.0 ? laugh
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#1929178 - 07/19/12 04:37 PM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
Steve Chandler Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/18/05
Posts: 2760
Loc: Urbandale, Iowa
Originally Posted By: Nikolas
I'm a long time Finale user, but I'm ready to admit that I believe that Sibelius is more user friendly.

I'm a Finale user since version 3.1 (early 1990s) and I noticed incremental changes in Finale once Sibelius came on the scene.
Originally Posted By: Nikolas

The other thing that bugs me with Sibelius is that its SO user friendly that everything is ready made and most users go with the default options, which leaves quite a bit to be desired! And this also means that a lot of scores look alike in Sibelius. In Finale the beginning (if you go for the default doc) is SO crude that you are forced to work your way in the layout!

LOL! This is the biggest flaw in Finale (beware vent coming). You are SOOO right, there's no way to use the default layout, whether it's music spacing, page layout, collisions between objects, dynamics, articulations, phrasing,... the list is endless and all of it requires manual adjustment. If I wasn't already on Finale's upgrade train I would have switched to Sibelius years ago, especially if they've managed to take all that effort out of use of their product. Sadly, it sounds like Sibelius' default look is merely good and if Avid is moving development "in house" it'll never be great. Bummer!

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#1929354 - 07/20/12 12:32 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
Nikolas Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5302
Loc: Europe
Steve: You can crossgrade to Sibelius very cheaply (for less than 200$)...

But as I said, I'm a fan of custom made scores in Finale! wink In fact I have my own templates for page sizes and % and libraries (for EMF purposes).
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#1929356 - 07/20/12 12:38 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
Mike A Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/08/06
Posts: 520
Loc: So.Cal.USA
Finale (a product of MakeMusic, Inc.) is also in danger ...

http://www.makemusic.com/Pressroom/Default.aspx?pid=555

MakeMusic Confirms Receipt of Proposal from LaunchEquity Partners, LLC

Minneapolis, MN – July 16, 2012 – MakeMusic, Inc. (NASDAQ: MMUS) confirms that it received, on July 15, 2012, a proposal from LaunchEquity Partners, LLC (“LaunchEquity”) to acquire the operating assets of MakeMusic, excluding cash, and assume the related liabilities of MakeMusic, free and clear of all liens and encumbrances, for $13.5 million. LaunchEquity’s proposal contemplates that MakeMusic would adopt a plan of liquidation, which would include a distribution of MakeMusic’s then available cash to existing shareholders. LaunchEquity and certain of its affiliates currently collectively own approximately 27.7% of MakeMusic’s outstanding common stock, according to the latest filings by LaunchEquity and its affiliates with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Consistent with its fiduciary duties, MakeMusic’s Board of Directors has appointed a Special Committee of independent, disinterested directors to review and consider the proposal, in consultation with financial and legal advisors, and determine the course of action that it believes is in the best interests of MakeMusic and its shareholders. The Board has authorized the Special Committee to consider the full range of available strategic alternatives including, but not limited to, continuing as an independent, public company with MakeMusic’s current growth plans.

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#1929358 - 07/20/12 12:42 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
Dachshund Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/19/11
Posts: 78
Loc: California
So what does this mean exactly?

I'm a relatively avid user of Sibelius 6, but I've never heard about this issue before.
Does the firing of this Daniel person mean that the company will be closing altogether. What problems will this cause exactly? No more new sibelius updates in the future? No Sibelius 8?

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#1929360 - 07/20/12 12:53 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Dachshund]
Kreisler Offline



Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13799
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Originally Posted By: Dachshund
So what does this mean exactly?


Nobody really knows yet.

The real problem is that Daniel Spreadbury was part of the UK office that was closed, and he was the senior product manager for over a decade. He's been the brains and the public face behind Sibelius for a long time.

And aside from his official role, he also runs www.sibeliusblog.com - a great source of tutorials and insider tips and tricks. Many users, myself included, have come to trust Spreadbury and his vision for the software.

Now, who knows what will happen. Avid won't have trouble finding top developer talent outside the UK, but they'll never find a development team with the kind of dedication and passion for music that the UK Sibelius guys had.
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#1929361 - 07/20/12 12:54 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Dachshund]
tangleweeds Offline

Silver Supporter until Jan 11 2012


Registered: 12/21/08
Posts: 1269
Loc: Portlandia
Originally Posted By: Dachshund
So what does this mean exactly?

I'm a relatively avid user of Sibelius 6, but I've never heard about this issue before.
Does the firing of this Daniel person mean that the company will be closing altogether. What problems will this cause exactly? No more new sibelius updates in the future? No Sibelius 8?

It looks like they're getting rid of the development team which has developed Sibelius for all of these years, and planning to outsource the coding to people who have no idea of all the ins and outs of how this huge program is coded.

Basically the're erasing their institutional memory.


Edited by tangleweeds (07/20/12 12:55 AM)
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#1929369 - 07/20/12 01:41 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Nikolas]
ChopinAddict Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/29/09
Posts: 6112
Loc: Land of the never-ending music
Actually you can customize Sibelius too (from the Layout option), but yes, if you refer to the default settings Sibelius is more "normal". However I don't have the latest version of Finale, and not even the latest version of Sibelius, as I prefer 6 to 7, at least on my relatively small screen (I use a laptop).
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Music is my best friend.


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#1929374 - 07/20/12 02:14 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Dachshund]
Nikolas Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5302
Loc: Europe
Originally Posted By: Dachshund
So what does this mean exactly?
Like Kreisler said, nobody knows.

But I "know" Daniel.

I went and bought Sib 7 as a crossgrade from Finale (as I suggested to Steve) and I had various issues. Daniel took it to his heart to help out: He requested that I sent him the files I had trouble, confirmed my findings, offered a great solution (I can't mention this in public, but I'll just say that sibelius can 'backsave' to previous versions) and after a few weeks came up with a new update for Sib 7 which resolved the matter.

All for free and with great expense of his time!

I will say that this is one of the few times that customer services surpasses my expectations (the other being Andrew K. from LASS, but that's another matter, and Niclas from Pianoteq, who is an awesome guy!)!

Makemusic and Finale customer services is awful as it stands, and it's not like they have more users than Sibelius!

So I think that Daniel, apart from being the head of the team, and a great guy, he's also the body, the spirit and the soul of Sibelius right now and for a long time now! Take that away and you're stuck with a body-less, soul-less, spirit-less, head-less corpse called Sibelius!

_________________________

Just check the pro-tools case: Once a brilliant program, now everyone loves to hate the lack of development. In fact check Logic as well: Once a brilliant program, now there's no development, even if it's now a part of Apple itself!

One of the few software that have survived, thus far, the transition to a bigger company is Steinberg (Cubase) which was sold a few years ago to Yamaha!
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#1929377 - 07/20/12 02:16 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: ChopinAddict]
Nikolas Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5302
Loc: Europe
Originally Posted By: ChopinAddict
Actually you can customize Sibelius too (from the Layout option), but yes, if you refer to the default settings Sibelius is more "normal". However I don't have the latest version of Finale, and not even the latest version of Sibelius, as I prefer 6 to 7, at least on my relatively small screen (I use a laptop).
Yes, that's not fully what I mean (if you're refering to what I said about layouts, etc).

Sibelius offers EVERYTHING ready. Wavy lines, cluster lines, little hands, percussion signs, buttons, various length dashed lines, various thickness lines, etc... All these things I create alone in Finale, which gives me ultimate control. It's harder, but my scores don't look like Sibelius (as is actually evident from another thread), and it's not only the font that makes a difference.
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#1929486 - 07/20/12 05:47 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: Mike A]
wr Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/23/07
Posts: 7892
Originally Posted By: Mike A
Finale (a product of MakeMusic, Inc.) is also in danger ...

http://www.makemusic.com/Pressroom/Default.aspx?pid=555

MakeMusic Confirms Receipt of Proposal from LaunchEquity Partners, LLC



I think the summary that ends that proposal letter is pretty interesting.

"As we stated above, we believe that MMUS requires significant intervention now for the following reasons:

· significant leadership changes - MMUS has had four CEOs in the last four years and now has to recruit a fifth CEO. Not only is this expensive and time consuming, it is very disruptive to the organization and to the company’s relationship and standing with industry partners.

· significant development costs ahead - we believe that the source code base of Finale and the other notation products is near end of life and significant financial resources are necessary to update and refresh the notation product line. A review of recent quarterly financial reports makes clear that the company’s expenses are rising while its balance sheet is contracting. This suggests a period of heavy investment ahead.

· significant revenue decrease in 2012 and beyond appears likely for the following reasons -

--- we believe that the current Finale product release will be a partial upgrade versus the typical annual refresh and re-release cycle, which would generate higher revenues.

--- SmartMusic subscription growth has stalled while spending on its development and marketing continue to rise. We believe that shareholders have much higher expectations for SmartMusic subscriber levels and are disappointed with this stagnation.

--- the largest print music publisher, Hal Leonard Corporation (“HLC”), announced in late 2011 its entry into the digital music publishing, education and performance evaluation software market with its Essential Elements Interactive platform. We understand that HLC is using a more modern software platform. We believe this is a direct competitive threat to MMUS’s SmartMusic product suite and it will come from the largest industry participant that is also a significant contributor of content for SmartMusic. If MMUS cannot access quality content from HLC, SmartMusic’s allure in the marketplace is likely to be seriously damaged and the company may face increased repertoire development costs from other sources."


I had no idea their executive turnover had been so dramatic - not a good sign. I'm also surprised at the offer price - I thought they were a larger company. I did get an email from them not long ago saying they weren't doing the usual revision this year. What an odd coincidence that both of the major notation programs are finding themselves in turmoil simultaneously.

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#1929492 - 07/20/12 06:21 AM Re: Save Sibelius! [Re: wr]
Nikolas Online   content
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 5302
Loc: Europe
Originally Posted By: wr
I had no idea their executive turnover had been so dramatic - not a good sign. I'm also surprised at the offer price - I thought they were a larger company. I did get an email from them not long ago saying they weren't doing the usual revision this year. What an odd coincidence that both of the major notation programs are finding themselves in turmoil simultaneously.
I'd say that this is scary, at least for me... :-/
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Screw stringer parts needed
by tenspan
Yesterday at 08:58 PM
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