This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

Bronfman Likes Telcos in iPod Race

The greatest threat to Apple's (AAPL) dominance in the portable music player business won't come from other consumer electronics manufacturers, Edgar Bronfman Jr. said Monday.

Instead, it will come from operators of wireless telephone networks.

Bronfman, chairman and CEO of Warner Music Group, suggested it wouldn't be long before operators such as Vodafone (VOD) become major distributors of music via third-generation networks and cell phones with memory comparable to that of current portable music players.

Those network operators, said Bronfman, have advantages such as a secure, piracy-resistant network and distribution base of phone-carrying customers much larger than the 5.7 million iPod portable music players that Apple has sold.

"Ultimately," said Bronfman, "that's the biggest competition."

Bronfman's Monday presentation at the UBS Media Week Conference in New York shed light on the strategic thinking of a key player in the music business. Bronfman, formerly vice chairman of Vivendi Universal (V), earlier this year led a private investment group's buyout of Time Warner's (TWX) WMG, and is reportedly planning a public offering of stock in the coming months.

But while Bronfman made a compelling argument Monday that digital technologies harken a promising future for the music business, he has had poor luck in the past in converting a strategic vision into a profitable investment. Bronfman was a big backer of onetime Vivendi chief Jean-Marie Messier's attempt to create a worldwide media conglomerate from a French utilities company. But Bronfman's investment in Vivendi, along with that of other shareholders, tanked as Messier's strategy collapsed and Vivendi suffered a cash flow crisis.

In his discussion of the state of the music industry, Bronfman indicated that he believed a weak fourth quarter -- finishing out a year that started with strong year-over-year growth -- would lead to full-year 2004 sales that will be flat with 2003 or slightly up.

1 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 16,915.07 -70.54 -0.42%
S&P 500 1,964.68 -8.15 -0.41%
NASDAQ 4,396.2040 -22.83 -0.52%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto
Advertising Partners

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs