Bankrupt iHeartMedia Owes Musicians Millions
Included in the mountains of documents filed in preparation for last night's iHeartMedia bankruptcy were lists of unpaid bills. Alongside $20 billion in debts to bondholders were performing rights organizations, record labels, a music streamer, and others that return revenue to musicians.
Here's a partial list of the millions of dollars that iHeartMedia owes musicians and music companies:
SoundExchange $6.4 million
ASCAP $1.4 million
BMI $1.4 million
Global Music Rights $2 million
Warner Music Group $3.9 million
Universal Music Group $1.3 million (more than 5o% of Spotify revenue is paid to rightshoders)
Nielsen $20 million (Nielsen gathers music data for Billboard and others)
Will They Ever Be Paid?
Today's filing wiped out half of iHearts $20 billion in debt, but its unclear what means for iHeartMedia's music company creditors.
iHeart claims it will continue "operating the business in the ordinary course," and that "cash on hand together with cash generated from ongoing operations will be sufficient to fund and support the business during the Chapter 11 proceedings." But if the company follows the pattern of many other companies in Chapter 11, that could mean pennies on the dollar for the millions own to musicians and rightsholder.