All posts tagged Warner Music

Warner Music Top’s YouTube Original Channel Chart

Full story and interview with Warner’s Ocean MacAdams at AdAge.com

More from Dive Into Media: Vevo, Spotify & Neil Young

 

Vevo CEO Rio Caraeff, made the first public statements regarding the video site’s profitability at the digital media conference this week, putting it plainly, “We are making money, yes,” with a reported $150 million in revenue last year. Read more…

EMI Sale: Warner Music hires antitrust lobbying firm, UK indies take AIM at deal

The LegalTimes blog reported on Tuesday that Warner Music Group has hired the lobbyist team of Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, who filed registration report paperwork with Congress last week indicating it would be lobbying on antitrust matters – Read more…

YouTube & record labels engaged in renewal talks

According to an article by Greg Sandoval Read more…

News Bytes: BigChampagne acquired by Live Nation, Rara-who?, Sony & Warner join Grooveshark fray & more

Read more…

Bits & Pieces: Citi Receives 10+ bids for EMI, KOL Cancel Tour to Tune of $15million, Turntable.fm & more…

Worth more than Warner Music?

The first round bids for EMI are in, with multiple reports pointing to more than 10 offers received for either the whole or individual recorded music and publishing arms of EMI Group, from interested parties including Sony, Universal, Warner Music, BMG Rights Management and a host of private equity groups. At least one analysis this week claimed that Citigroup could possibly fetch more than $4 billion for the company based on a similar multiple used in the recent Warner acquisition. An article in FT.com yesterday claims that the current tendered bids range from $3 – $4b, and that between four and six of the submitted offers were for the entire music group. Citi is expected to respond to the opening bidders this week…  While less humorous than last summer’s Kings of Leon bird droppings incident, the band’s cancelation of the remainder of their current U.S. tour dates following an abrupt termination of a set in Dallas last week, may prove much more damaging. Rollingstone.com takes a look at other recent tour cancelations with somewhat dubious explanations, and according to reports, the KOL cancellation may cost policy holder, Loyds of London, as much as $15 million in payouts to promoters and others affected… The much talked about Turntable.fm has secured a $7.5 million financing round led by Union Square Ventures, which has some wondering if the startup will next seek licensing agreements with the record labels and music publishers. Lady Gaga and Kanye West are also reportedly among those who contributed to the funding… And The Shins are following fellow former Sub Pop label mates Band of Horse, in moving from the venerable indie to a new imprint-label deal with Columbia Records for their next release.

Industry Round Up: Free Agency, New Signings, Blind Item & more…

Industry & fans come out in droves to catch one of WU LYF's first U.S. shows @ The Echo

It must be the heat… As summer rolls on it seems that temperatures are rising among a number of notable indie and major label acts, causing them to part ways with their management. One’s loss is another’s potential gain, as many of the newly available artists begin the courting process with prospective new managers. While the scuttlebutt varies, it’s no secret that as the music business continues to wrestle with a new and constantly changing landscape, it’s managers who often times, fairly or unfairly, take the hit over frustrations…The Warner MusicEMI merger storyline continues with the latter’s current auction process underway, and recent reports have the Bunny cutting headcount in anticipation of a possible uniting of the two companies. Though it appears the label is also busy beefing up its A&R department and looking to cherry-pick other senior executives. The term headhunter is not being taken lightly under new Russian owner Len Blavatnik. Some of the names that have been surfacing from the proverbial rumor mill have stirred up quite the reaction among their peers… Meanwhile more recruiting action continues at Sony Music and Universal Music labels, as the newly installed leaders at both groups continue to tap respective past confidants. Is a longtime label-head consigliere advising each side on their new executive placements? Many expect the shuffling going on at both groups to only increase come January, when the no-poaching clause between the two comes to an end, though word on the street is that back room dealings have already started… Expect an official announcement soon of the new Dr. Luke label deal that we recently tipped… Elsewhere, it was a regular A&R brouhaha at The Echo on L.A.’s east-side Tuesday night, as England’s mysterious WU LYF (pronounced “Woo Life”) played to a packed room. The quartet, who has already been the subject of heavy pursuit by labels across the pond as a result of their furtive persona and bizarre imagery, was well received by the mostly male-dominated crowd. At least one observer noted the singer was harder to understand than a drunken Scot… In more new artist updates, SoCal locals Milo Greene have signed with Atlantic Records-aligned Chop Shop Records. The relatively new group quickly garnered attention from both fans and tastemakers alike, including KCRW, who just featured the band on its third installment of this years Also I Like to Rock series, along with Grouplove, who are also under the Atlantic label domain… And Mom + Pop Records have added to their already burgeoning roster, by signing Hard 8-managed SLEEPER/AGENT and SXSW buzz-act alum Neon Indian – both artists have new albums set to be released in September… BLIND ITEM: Which high-level label executive is in hot water with the label’s head honcho for apparently taking too much credit for the company’s current artist success in a recent LA Times piece? Did said label exec’s shameless self-promotion write his own pink slip? Hmmm…

Bits & Pieces: Bug Music For Sale Again, First Round Deadline for EMI Bids Set & more…

The owners of Bug Music are once again shopping for a buyer according to a report by Bloomberg this morning, with a target price of between $330 and $400 million for the publishing company. Acquired by a group of investors led by Spectrum Equity in 2006, the pubco was on the block as recently as last year, and while a sale was never completed, presumably due to lack of a high enough bid, insiders share that BMG Rights Management came close to completing a deal. It’s likely that they’ll be among bidders again this time, along with the 30 interested companies, according to the report, including Sony/ATV, which signed NDA’s to receive an offering book for Bug… Of course a higher profile auction is Citigroup‘s unloading of EMI, which has an early August deadline for first round bids now expected, according to reports today. Warner Music has been the front-runner in early EMI sale talks, along with the KKR/Bertelsmann-backed BMG (read our pt.1 and pt.2 posts on that scenario), though a New York Post piece yesterday has Warner’s debt impeding a successful acquisition, and in speaking with the Financial Times over the weekend, Bertelsmann CEO Hartmut Ostrowski cautioned his company wouldn’t get involved in a bidding war for EMI and is only interested in offering a reasonable price. Those in the know still expect both companies to be on the shortlist over the coming weeks… In related news, it was announced today that Access Industries officially completed their acquisition of WMG… And elsewhere, charter sponsors for the U.S. unveiling of Spotify, including Chrysler, Coke, and News Corp’s The Dailyreportedly paid $1 million each to be included in the launch, with their branding prominently displayed in the service, and each getting 10,000 membership codes to giveaway as well.

Spotify’s Success in U.S. a Priority for Record Labels [UPDATED]

Multiple reports have Spotify launching in the U.S. this week, with the most recent scuttlebutt claiming the release will be invite-only initially, with members allowed to distribute invites as well – a strategy that has been employed by other notable services such as Gmail. A splash-page that went up last week allows people in the U.S. to signup to receive an invite to use Spotify “soon,” and while there has been no official announcement about a Warner Music licensing deal, it is believed to be as good as done… More details as to what the startup is planning for the U.S. were summarized on AllThingsD from ad pitch materials obtained, which include a target figure of 50 million users in the first year, with an estimated 150 million Facebook users that “will start to see music on their feeds” exposing them to the new service. That is far from an official (or exclusive) deal between the two companies though, and details about how the service will actually integrate with Facebook are still sketchy at best. Meanwhile it appears that other similar services like Rdio and Rhapsody are looking to incorporate functionality with the social network as well. Spotify’s deck also mentions the massive amount of free publicity the startup has already received – now over two years of speculation and coverage about a U.S. version – and will continue to get when the launch is official. Even with all that, and presumably more up their sleeve, many are questioning the lofty first year objective. Using the service’s existing European numbers as the only available measurement, it is indeed difficult to conceive of the target user-base being reached so quickly… However, in addition to Facebook, significant publicity and even telecom carrier tie-ups being rumored, an important aspect being overlooked by many is the record labels themselves. Speaking with label folks familiar with the situation, the once reticent labels are now heavily getting behind the service. While the licensing agreements are the sticking point in just getting off the ground, it’s the additional marketing and promotional programs that can become a major factor in succeeding. There are other new music startups already operating that offer essentially the same major functionality as Spotify, but according to those in the know, there has not been another digital music service that the labels have lined-up behind this much since iTunes

[UPDATE: The service officially launched the morning of Thursday, July 14, and the invites are for access to the 'free' ad-version only, the 'premium' and 'unlimited' subscription levels are now active.]

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