It was renamed from ‘CBS International Service and Manufacturing Center’ (aka CBS, Haarlem) around the turn from 1990 to 1991 when Sony Music Entertainment Inc. legally succeeded CBS Records Inc. (further history below).
How to identify this plant as manufacturer:
Releases handled at Haarlem can be identified by so-called computer numbers.
Computer numbers have the following format: xx-yyyyyy-zz, where
xx: two digit label code
yyyyyy: six digit catalog number
zz: two digit sort code
Computer numbers only appear on releases handled at Haarlem and were used as order numbers within the Haarlem production cycle.
Please note that numbers on the cover may have an extra 0, e.g. 08-030034-20 (cover) vs. 08 30034 20 (runouts).
Pressed By can be used when the runout string mm nnnnn xx (or mm-nnnnn-xx) is found, e.g. "01 474549 20", or "08-30256-20". Please add the string as LCCN number in the format as found in the runouts.
A list of the various label and sort codes can be found here. Label code 08 was assigned to external orders not distributed by Sony Music.
After the capacities of the facility had been massively expanded during the CBS Records period it consisted of three main departments:
• A vinyl pressing and cassette duplication facility including lacquer cutting and galvanization
• A printing and packaging department which was also referred to as ‘SONY Music Printing, Haarlem’
• A warehouse complex / distribution hub
Digital sound carriers like CDs and MDs were manufactured by DADC Austria and assembled and packaged at Haarlem. After the termination of vinyl production in the UK sister plant in Aylesbury Haarlem virtually covered SONY Music’s entire UK vinyl market of regular international releases.
Nevertheless the vinyl pressing department soon suffered from massive overcapacities due to a constantly declining market. This eventually resulted in the sale of this department to Record Industry which was effected by June 1998.
The Sony Music Printing department was legally excluded and registered as Sony Music Printing (Holland) BV on 30 March 1998. It was sold to IMPAC Europe/Westavco and registered as AGI Media Packaging Haarlem BV on 22 November 2000.
In February 2002 Sony Music announced the shutdown of the distribution hub following the management's decision to open smaller regional distribution hubs in Germany and France which was justified with a further decline in sound carrier sales due to increasing product piracy and private sound carrier duplication. The estate was sold to IKEA in March 2003.