MBW sources told us last week that Warner Music Group was set to announce a licensing deal with Vevo, having held out from placing its content on the platform for seven long years.
That deal has now been confirmed by both parties. And, as expected, it’s a less committal affair than Vevo’s agreements with Warner’s rivals.
However, it does mean Vevo can finally now boast of hosting content from all three major labels – a big breakthrough for the company ahead of its expected announcement of a subscription service later this year.
‘Premium’ Warner videos will start to appear on Vevo platforms imminently – including Vevo’s own app and its web presence at Vevo.com.
However, a crucial tenet of the deal is that Warner videos do not appear via Vevo channels on YouTube. In addition, Warner has not taken any equity in Vevo.
In February, MBW learned that Universal Music Group now owns a 49% stake in Vevo; a chunk valued at €76m ($83m) by UMG parent Vivendi.
Other equity holders in Vevo include Sony Music Entertainment, Google and Abu Dhabi Media.
Erik Huggers, Vevo
Erik Huggers, CEO, Vevo said: “Today marks an important milestone for Vevo as we forge a new relationship with Warner Music Group based on a shared vision of putting artists first and creating a platform that does justice to the music.
“We’re excited to partner with Warner Music and bring their artists’ content to life through our new mobile and web experiences and across a range of our programming.”
Steve Cooper, CEO, Warner Music Group (pictured, main), said: “Erik and his team continue to evolve their service and bring to life a new vision for Vevo.
“We’re pleased to have built a flexible and mutually beneficial relationship that will bring additional creative and commercial possibilities to our artists and songwriters.
“This partnership is the latest in a recent series of deals that are helping us explore ways to unlock the true value of music videos in attracting and engaging vast audiences.”
Vevo, which boasts over 18 billion monthly views globally, relaunched its app last month, adding a sleek new design and a range of hosts/curators to entertain users and recommend new music.
Warner, meanwhile, continues to press ahead with an independent video strategy.
It recently agreed to be a test partner for Facebook’s new social feature, Slideshow, which allows users to add licensed music to their videos on the social media network.
WMG has also recently become the first major to license promising video startups Musical.ly and Vadio.Music Business Worldwide