Thumbplay News

Never Before Available Mobile Content from Rap/Hip-Hop Legend Takes Center Stage

NEW YORK – July 7, 2008 – Thumbplay® (, the #1 mobile entertainment content service in the U.S.*, and Universal Music Group (UMG), the world's leading music company, today announced the exclusive launch of ringtones and other mobile content by legendary Def Jam recording artist and music icon Shawn 'Jay-Z' Carter.

Starting today, only Thumbplay customers can personalize their mobile phones with a collection of ten chart-shattering singles that have never been made available in the mobile marketplace. Encompassing some of the greatest hits from the past ten years from this cultural icon, Thumbplay’s customers will enjoy exclusive access to Jay-Z’s biggest hits, including:
o 1-900-Hustler, The Dynasty: Roc La Familia (2000)
o Can I Get A, Vol. 2: Hard Knock Life (1998)
o Encore, The Black Album (2003)
o Excuse Me Miss, The Blueprint 2: The Gift & The Curse (2002)
o Girls, Girls, Girls, The Blueprint (2001)
o Heart Of The City (Ain't No Love), The Blueprint (2001)
o IZZO (H.O.V.A.), The Blueprint (2001)
o Jigga What, Jigga Who, Vol. 2: Hard Knock Life (1998)
o Roc Boys (And The Winner Is), American Gangster (2007)
o S. Carter, Vol. 3: Life and Times of S. Carter (1999)

“UMG is committed to ensuring that fans are provided with new and innovative ways to access the music of their favorite artists,” stated Adam Flick, Vice President of Marketing, Digital, Universal Music Group Distribution. “And our partnership with Thumbplay provides an engaging and dynamic means of doing just that.”

“The availability of exclusive content from Jay-Z marks the continuation of Thumbplay’s leadership and commitment to delivering excellence to its consumers in the mobile music arena,” commented Are Traasdahl, Thumbplay’s CEO and founder. “We are pleased that Universal Music Group has chosen Thumbplay to be the first to launch this exclusive collection of Jay-Z’s chart-topping hits and look forward to sharing more exclusive UMG content with our consumers in the future.”

Thumbplay and UMG inked a deal in April of 2006 that significantly increased the mobile entertainment content leader’s offerings through access to the full UMG catalog of music tones from artists such as Eminem, Mariah Carey, Kanye West, Sheryl Crow, 50 Cent, Jack Johnson, Gwen Stefani, blink-182 and The Killers. By targeting diverse communities of consumers and creating strong partnerships with major online brands and content providers, Thumbplay has been able expand its Web site traffic to over 4 million unique visitors each month.

With more than 100,000 pieces of mobile entertainment content under license, including ringtones, wallpapers, games, videos, voice tones and text-based services, Thumbplay has built a strong consumer following and gained broad recognition as a leader in the direct-to-consumer mobile content space.

During the last quarter of 2007, Thumbplay announced deals to integrate its mobile entertainment content catalog into the Web and mobile portals of AOL and MSN Mobile, as well as iLike, one of the Web’s leading social music discovery services. Earlier this year, Thumbplay signed a digital distribution agreement to roll out mobile content stores on the Web sites for Entertainment Tonight ( and more than 650 of Clear Channel Radio’s local music, news and sports stations throughout the U.S.

About Universal Music Group
Universal Music Group is the world's leading music company with wholly owned record operations or licensees in 77 countries. Its businesses also include Universal Music Publishing Group, the industry's leading global music publishing operation.

Universal Music Group's record labels include Decca, Deutsche Grammophon, Disa, Emarcy, Fonovisa, Interscope Geffen A&M Records, Island Def Jam Music Group, Lost Highway Records, Machete Music, MCA Nashville, Mercury Nashville, Mercury Records, Philips, Polydor Records, Universal Motown Records Group, Universal Music Latino, Universal Records South, and Verve Music Group as well as a multitude of record labels owned or distributed by its record company subsidiaries around the world. The Universal Music Group owns the most extensive catalog of music in the industry, which includes the last 100 years of the world's most popular artists and their recordings. UMG's catalog is marketed through two distinct divisions, Universal Music Enterprises (in the U.S.) and Universal Strategic Marketing (outside the U.S.). Universal Music Group also includes eLabs, its new media and technologies division; Bravado, its merchandising company; Twenty-First Artists, its full service management division; and Helter Skelter, its live music agency.

Universal Music Group is a unit of Vivendi, a global media and communications company.

About Thumbplay
Thumbplay, Inc. is defining the mobile entertainment experience for U.S. consumers. As the largest and fastest growing mobile entertainment content destination, Thumbplay gives consumers access to the broadest and deepest catalog in the industry, spanning audio, video and gaming content from the leading music labels and artists, game publishers and media companies. Its innovative delivery and marketing platform makes it easy for users to discover, manage, store and share mobile content online and on their wireless devices.

Headquartered in New York City, Thumbplay was founded in September 2004 by Are Traasdahl and Evan Schwartz. It is backed by Bain Capital Ventures, SoftBank Capital, i-Hatch Ventures, Redwood Partners, New Enterprise Associates, Meritech, Brookside Capital Partners and Cross Creek Capital. More information can be found at or at from a mobile phone.



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