The largest Canadian distributor of vinyl, RPM, abruptly and unexpectedly closed up shop earlier this month with little to no explanation as to why the company will be ceasing operations.
The letter in its entirety from President Paul Herzog can be read below:
To all accounts,
I regret to inform you that RPM Distribution will be closing all operations effective immediately. No orders will be processed moving forward and any existing orders in the system will be cancelled. All returns on site will be processed and credits will be provided. New returns will not be issued or accepted. Limited staff will be here to facilitate and oversee accounts payable/receivables and supplier returns. Any questions or concerns can be forwarded to email@example.com.
I would like to thank you for your support over the years and I hope that we made a difference.
The independent distributor was the primary source for vinyl for many independent music retailers, who relied on RPM as their supplier as they can’t afford to stock with a major label that would require minimum orders, usually pressing the fiscal limitations of a local shop.
This news comes only months after the announcement that the previously two largest Independent distribution companies Outside Music and Distribution Select would be merging. Clearly there is something happening in Canada’s independent music distribution market.
This closing and previous merger will cause a huge shift in local music distribution for Canada, opening up a hole that will need to be filled for small music retailers to thrive.