Napster fills in the blanks with CD deals

Napster is teaming up with Imation, a maker of optical media products, to market and distribute Napster-branded blank CDs and DVDs in North America. The online music company also announced an agreement to sell the blank CDs, along with other products, via U.S. retail giant Target. Imation, which sells a range of products from rewritable compact discs (CD-Rs) to storage devices, said Wednesday that it has signed a licensing agreement with Napster to become the music vendor's exclusive dealer of optical storage products. The companies said Imation will manufacture and distribute blank CDs and DVDs bearing the Napster name and logo.

Simultaneously, Napster outlined plans to market merchandise, including the Imation CDs and DVDs, at Target stores starting Feb. 15. The company said the "one-stop shop" collection would include prepaid Napster download cards, Napster 2.0 and other Roxio software, blank discs from Imation with promotional codes for free music downloads and Napster-branded Case Logic CD cases. Target will be the first national U.S. retailer to offer the entire package.

Napster hopes that it will attract new customers by offering many of the tools necessary to begin downloading and saving digital music files, according to company executives. It believes that existing subscribers will also buy the blank discs to create hard copies of files they download via its service. The company did not list pricing for any of the new products.

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