The Compo Company Ltd.


(1918 - c.1970s) Also as The Compo Co. Limited - Canada's first independent record company. Founded in Lachine, Quebec, by Herbert S. Berliner, an executive of Berliner Gramophone of Canada and the eldest son of 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 S. 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 (12) and Apex (3) record labels among others. Apex was the longest lasting of the Compo labels, lasting into the 1970s.

In 1935, Compo became the Canadian licensee for the American Decca Records, Inc., which bought Compo in 1951 with Berliner remaining as president until his death in 1966. MCA Inc. acquired American Decca in 1962, including Compo. When MCA amalgamated all of its Canadian holdings into MCA Records (Canada) in 1970, Compo moved its head office to MCA's Willowdale headquarters, with the Lachine office being relegated to Quebec branch status. MCA eventually evolved into Universal Music Canada.

Also printed as:
- Compo Co. Ltd., Canada
- The Compo Co. Limited
- The Compo Co, Limited, Lachine Montreal Canada
- The Compo Co, Limited, Lachine Que. Canada
- The Compo Co, Lachine Que. Canada
- Compagnie Compo Ltée

Pressing and distribution main clients between 1919 and 1950:
Phonola (3) (1919-1921)
Gennett, Starr Gennett (1919-1925)
Domino (1925 to 1930, budget)
Lucky Strike (1925-1929, budget)
Microphone (1925, budget)
Brunswick (1932-1934,1943-1960)
Melotone (1931-1942)
Crown (1930-1936, budget)
Decca (1936-1970)
Minerva (1935-1942, for Eaton's department stores)
Royal (1930-1936, budget)

Sublabels:Apex (3), Apex Electrophonic, Canada Sales Limited, Compo Co Ltée., Lero, Lucky Strike (2), Point Records (5), Pop Apex, Sterling Record Co., Sun (12)
Contact Info:

Lachine plant (prior to early 1940s)
131-18th Ave.
Lachine, Quebec

Lachine plant (early 1940s onwards):
2337 Remembrance St.
Lachine, Quebec
Phone: 514-637-2561
Telex: 01-20122

Cornwall plant (1963 to Feb 1976):
3400 Montreal Rd.
Cornwall, Ontario

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