Welcome to Music Business Worldwide’s weekly round-up – where we make sure you caught the five biggest stories to hit our headlines over the past seven days. MBW’s round-up is supported by Centtrip, which helps over 500 of the world’s best-selling artists maximise their income and reduce their touring costs.
Universal Music Group‘s leadership team had over fifty billion reasons to celebrate this week.
The company, the world’s biggest music rightsholder, debuted on the Amsterdam stock exchange on Tuesday (September 21), with a market cap of $54 billion – over a third bigger than the reference price set by former parent company Vivendi.
Commenting on the successful listing, UMG Chairman and CEO Sir Lucian Grainge hailed the day as an “exciting milestone in UMG’s storied history”.
There was also a lot of money flowing elsewhere in major label land this week, with NASDAQ-listed Warner Music Group‘s share price shooting up nearly 10% on Tuesday following UMG’s market debut.
Meanwhile, just yesterday (September 23), WMG boss Steve Cooper revealed that his company’s recorded music operation has a present run-rate of $235 million per year in revenue from “alternative offerings that create new use cases for music”.
Warner’s publishing division, said Cooper, is generating significant additional revenue from these platforms.
This is part of a clear trend amongst the majors. Back in May, Rob Stringer, Chairman of WMG rival Sony Music Group, revealed that via partnerships with the likes of Peloton, Fortnite and other platforms, Sony Music generated nearly $400 million during its past fiscal year.
UMG Chairman and CEO Sir Lucian Grainge has also recently commented on this growth trend. He told the Guardian ahead of UMG’s IPO that “when you add fans’ growing listening through voice-controlled speakers, connected cars, social media, gaming, fitness and so on, you realise why we believe we’re just at the beginning of a new wave of music consumption”.
The deal between the two parties comes two months after Twitch said it was “disappointed” with the music publishing industry after being hit with 1,000 copyright infringement claims over music played in the background of recorded VODs (on-demand videos) on the platform.
In a statement issued this week, the NMPA said: “Twitch will provide new opportunities to music publishers who will be offered an opt-in deal allowing for future collaborations to bring new facets to both the gaming experience and songwriter exposure.”
Elsewhere this week, Boris Johnson’s government released an official response to a report calling for the majors to be referred to the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), while Sony Music Entertainment France appointed a new Managing Director…
Universal Music Group officially became a publicly traded company this week
The world’s biggest rights-holder listed on the Euronext Amsterdam Stock Exchange on Tuesday (September 21), opening with a €25.25 ($29.63) share price.
The reference price of UMG’s shares was set at €18.50 ($21.70) per share by former parent company Vivendi, valuing UMG at €33.5 billion (approx. $39bn).
UMG’s shares hit a peak of €26.45 ($31) during the day on Tuesday, and closed at €25.10 ($29.43), which translates to a valuation of €45.5 billion or $53.3 billion after the company’s first full day of trading…
2) WELCOME TO THE NEW RECORD BUSINESS: WARNER MUSIC GROUP IS NOW GENERATING OVER $270M FROM TIKTOK, PELOTON, FACEBOOK AND OTHER ‘ALTERNATIVE’ PLATFORMS ANNUALLY
Yesterday (September 23), Warner Music Group boss Steve Cooper, speaking during an interview at the Goldman Sachs’ Communacopia event, confirmed that WMG’s recorded music operation has a present run-rate of $235 million per year in revenue from “alternative offerings that create new use cases for music”.
Cooper also confirmed that the same sources of revenue are providing cash at a “proportionate rate” to WMG’s music publishing business.
Cooper notably called out Facebook (which has “begun to utilize music in new and interesting ways over the last couple years”) as well as TikTok, Peloton and Roblox for their material contributions to that $235 million number, plus other platforms and innovations that are providing “new use cases” for music…
The National Music Publishers’ Association (NMPA) and Amazon-owned livestreaming platform Twitch have announced an agreement, which, in a statement they explain will see them “work together to build productive partnerships between the service and music publishers”.
According to the NMPA, Twitch will provide “new opportunities” to music publishers, who will be offered “an opt-in deal”, which, the NMPA adds, will allow for “future collaborations to bring new facets to both the gaming experience and songwriter exposure”.
The NMPA adds in a statement that “these collaborations will create an even more dynamic and expansive environment for people to discover, watch, and interact with songwriters”…
4) UK GOVERNMENT TAKES NO LEGISLATIVE ACTION FOLLOWING MAJOR-BASHING REPORT INTO MUSIC INDUSTRY’S STREAMING ECONOMICS
If you thought the music industry was guilty of wasting time by having meetings about meetings, man, you should get a load of the UK’s Parliament.
The global entertainment business had its eyes fixed on Britain’s politicians on Wednesday morning (September 22), as the country’s government – led by Prime Minister Boris Johnson – officially responded to a report by another group of politicians about the music industry.
You may remember that report: Published by a Department of Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) Committee in July, it called for government action on a number of music industry issues regarding streaming payouts, and rather seemed to revel in beating up the major record companies.
The standout recommendation from the DCMS report was that the majors’ dominance of the UK record industry be referred to the UK’s competition watchdog – the Competitions and Markets Authority (CMA)… which has its hands full right now investigating Sony‘s acquisition of AWAL…
Sony Music Entertainment France has appointed Marie-Anne Robert as Managing Director of the company.
Robert will oversee all operations, signings and acquisitions, accelerate the French company’s digital transformation and develop new artist opportunities with sister Sony companies, in what is the fifth largest music market in the world.
She will report to Daniel Lieberberg, the President of Continental Europe and Africa, who is currently overseeing operations in the country until Robert takes up the role on October 4, 2021…