Major Labels

Universal Music Group Revenues, Profits Rise With Help From Streaming Music

image from[UPDATED] Profitability has been elusive for record labels in the last 5-10 years, including for so-called major music groups like WMG. Not so for Universal Music Group where CEO Lucian Grainge seems to have created a modern music juggernaut.

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Universal Music Group reported both increased revenue and earnings for the first half of 2015, bolstered by streaming services.

Universal, whose financial results were reported as part of its parent company, Vivendi, posted $2.6 billion in revenue for the first half, up 15.4 percent from the same period in 2014.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization was up as well, with the label reporting $255 million in earnings, up 11.5% from last year.

The news for the quarter was good as well, with $1.4 billion in revenue and $139 million in earnings.

Vivendi said that the results were helped by a 34 percent increase in revenue from subscription and streaming services during the first half of the year, which more than offset the decline in digital and physical sales. The sales period covered also did not reflect the launch of Apple music, which opened its digital doors on June 30th.

Vivendi reported strong growth from streaming last year, but it wasn't enough to overcome the downward momentum of download sales and the company's revenue slid by 6.7%.  Celebrity Access

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