Ethiopia Habtemariam, who manages R&B singer Keri Hilson, will be installed as the new head of Motown records, replacing Sylvia Rhone, who stepped down last month.
According to Billboard Biz, the revamped Motown will run as a smaller label, moving out of the Universal circle and instead share resources with the Island Def Jam Group.
Habtemariam, currently head of urban music/ senior VP of creative services at the Universal Music Publishing Group, is still working out the details of her new contract, sources say. When the deal is done, she will report to Barry Weiss, chairman & CEO of Island Def Jam and Universal Republic Groups. In her new role she will be given a creative title, charged with heading up Motown, which is expected to have a staff of about a dozen employees.
The label will inherit most of the current roster, including Erykah Badu and Kem and Habtemariam will have the responsibility to pare back the roster as she sees fit, as well as signing established and developing artists going forward, sources say.