Compo Company Ltd. was Canada's first independent record company.[1]

The Compo Company Ltd.
corporation Edit this on Wikidata
FateSold to MCA Inc. and became MCA Records Canada
SuccessorMCA Music Entertainment Canada
Universal Music Canada
Founded1918 Edit this on Wikidata
FounderHerbert Berliner
HeadquartersLachine, Quebec
ParentIndependent (1918-1951)
Decca U.S. (1951–1970)

The Compo Company was founded in 1918 in Lachine, Quebec, by Herbert Berliner, an executive of Berliner Gramophone of Canada and the oldest son of disc record inventor Emile Berliner.

Compo was created to serve the several American independent record companies such as Okeh Records which wanted to distribute records in Canada. Its initial business was pressing records in Canada for these companies. Herbert Berliner broke with Berliner Gramophone in 1921, taking several senior Berliner Gramophone executives with him. This allowed Compo to immediately expand into a full-fledged record company by establishing the Sun and Apex record labels among others. Apex was the longest lasting of the Compo labels, lasting into the 1970s.

Compo was one of only two Canadian record companies to survive the Great Depression. RCA Victor Records of Canada—formerly Berliner Gramophone—was the other (it is currently the oldest Canadian label that forms part of Sony Music Entertainment in Canada).

Warner Bros. Records used Compo as its Canadian distributor[2] until it established its own Canadian branch in 1967. That branch later became Warner Music Canada.

In 1935, Compo became the Canadian licensee for the American Decca Records. American Decca bought Compo in 1951 with Berliner staying on as president until his death in 1966. MCA Inc. acquired Compo when it acquired American Decca. Compo was renamed MCA Records (Canada) in 1970. The company eventually evolved into Universal Music Canada.

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  1. ^
  2. ^ Billboard - Google Books. (1965-08-21). Retrieved on 2013-07-16.

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