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The third largest record company in the world: Warner Music Group (WMG)

Warner Music Group (NASDAQ: WMG) was founded in 1958 and is headquartered in New York, New York, USA, with 5,400 full-time employees. It is one of the world’s leading music entertainment companies.

Warner Music Group

Warner Music Group (WMG):

Warner Music Group is an American record company headquartered in New York City. The company is the world’s third largest record company (one of the world’s three largest record companies) and the world’s largest US-owned music group. Time Warner (Time Warner) used to be its parent company, and broke away in 2004. In order to use cheap music in filming, Warner Bros. founded “Music Publishing Co., Ltd.” (MPHC) in 1929 and bought the music rights. In 1930, he purchased Brunswick Records and entered the recording industry.

In 1967, Warner Bros. Pictures acquired Atlantic Records. In 1972, it purchased Elektra Records and its subsidiary Nonesuch Records to form Warner-Atlantic-Elektra (WEA). In the following decades, Warner Bros. continued to develop into one of the world’s largest record companies through acquisitions in various countries. The original purchase targets included Erato in France, Teldec in Germany, and Finlandia in Finland.

In July 2011, Time Warner sold Warner Music Group to Access Industries. In July 2013, Warner Music Group acquired Parlophone Label Group from Universal Music. Since August 2, 2018, WMG has expanded its business to digital media operations through the acquisition of Uproxx.

Warner Music Group’s world-renowned iconic record brands include Atlantic Records, Warner Records, Elektra Records and Parlophone Records. They are home to many of the most popular and influential recording artists in the world. In addition, Warner Chappell Music, Warner Music’s global music publishing business, has an extraordinary catalog that includes timeless standards and contemporary pop songs, representing the works of more than 80,000 composers and composers , And has collected more than 1.4 million music works worldwide.

China’s well-known Chen Baiqiang, Lin Zixiang, Zhong Zhentao, Lu Fang, Du Dewei, Andy Lau, Guo Fucheng, Wang Jie, Zeng Hangsheng, Liu Ximing, Zhang Weijian, Lin Zhiying, Ma Junwei, Hu Nuoyan, Gu Juji, Huang Zihua, Ye Wanwen, Lin Yilian, Cai Lier, He Wanying, Li Zi, Ye Yunyi, Yinengjing, Li Lizhen, Li Ruilian, Luo Minzhuang, Zheng Xiuwen, Ma Yijing, Ji Yanyan, Gu Zulin, Dai Xinwei, Gigi Leung, Du Dezhi, Zhou Qisheng, Beyond, Tai Chi, Zhou Bohao, Lian Shiya, Xue Kaiqi, Fang Datong, Wei Lan, etc., signed by Warner Music City artist.

Warner Music Group (WMG) History (modern):

  • In 2000, Time Warner and America’s leading Internet service provider AOL merger, the creation of AOL Time Warner. The new group tried (but failed) again to acquire EMI, and then discussions about the acquisition of BMG came to a halt, and Bertelsmann eventually transferred BMG to a joint venture with Sony .
  • In 2002, AOLTW further consolidated its control of the publishing industry and purchased a 50% stake in music distributor Deston Songs from Edel AG.
  • In the early 2000s, the impact of the dot-com bubble burst had eroded AOL’s profits and stock value. In 2003, Time Warner’s board of directors removed AOL from its corporate name to exclude underperforming partners.
  • In order to reduce the debt burden, Time Warner Inc. (the company’s successor to Warner Communications) sold Warner Music Group to a group of investments headed by Edgar Bronfman Jr. for US$2.6 billion in 2004. By. The spin-off was completed on February 27, 2004. During the transition to independent ownership in 2004, WMG hired recording industry heavyweight Lyor Cohen from Universal Music Group (the result of the merger of the PolyGram and MCA label families) to try to reduce costs and improve performance. Time Warner (now WarnerMedia) no longer retains any ownership of WMG, although it can choose to reacquire a 20% stake in WMG within three years after the transaction is completed. However, WMG does have a royalty-free license to use Warner Bros. 15 years and use the old Warner Communications logo as the main logo of WMG. With the expiration of the royalty-free license in May 2019, Warner Bros. Records changed its name to Warner Records and introduced a new logo to replace the WB brand.
  • Once WMG left Time Warner, it began to cut costs by abolishing loss-making or low-income departments. Like competitor EMI, Warner has made historic changes and responded to the growth of the digital music market by closing or selling disc suppression plants to withdraw from record production, especially in the United States and the Netherlands where production costs are high. Area. The American manufacturing business was sold to Cinram in 2003.
  • In 2005, Miami-based Warner Bros. Publications was sold to Alfred Music Publishing. The former sold and distributed a large number of scores, books, educational materials, arrangements, arrangements and tutorials, but the transaction did not include WMG’s Word Music (church hymn, choral music and related instrumental music) business.
  • On May 3, 2006, WMG rejected EMI’s takeover offer. Then, WMG offered to buy EMI, but was also rejected.
  • In September 2006, WMG signed a new license agreement with video streaming service provider YouTube . According to the agreement, WMG will be able to handle advertising sales (and profit from user-created videos (including recordings owned by WMG)) of artist music videos on its services, share revenue with YouTube, and cooperate with YouTube for its content and related Channels build a “high-quality” user experience.
  • In August 2007, EMI was acquired by Terra Firma Capital Partners. Discussions about WMG’s possible acquisition of EMI attracted attention again in 2009. Prior to this, WMG issued bonds at a price of $1.1 billion, which revealed WMG’s relatively strong financial situation, which is in sharp contrast to the weak EMI and debt-laden situation.
  • On December 27, 2007, Warner announced that it would sell digital music without digital rights management through Amazon MP3, making it the third major record company to do so.
  • In 2008, the New York Times reported that WMG’s Atlantic Records became the first major record company-more than half of its digital music products sold in the United States came from digital products.
  • In 2008, WMG and several other major record companies invested in a new music streaming service, Spotify .
  • Due to license deal negotiations between Google and WMG in 2008, music video content licensed by WMG has been removed from YouTube. In 2009, it was announced that the two companies had reached a deal and the video would be added back to YouTube. As of 2017, WMG has expanded its deal with YouTube.
  • In 2009, WMG acquired Rykodisc and Roadrunner Records.
  • In 2009, Warner Music took over the distribution of EMI and audio and video products in Southeast Asia and South Korea, including the newer domestic distribution announced in September 2008. The two companies have established successful partnerships in India, the Middle East and North Africa. EMI has been marketing and distributing Warner Music’s physical products in India, the Middle East and North Africa since 2005.
  • In 2010, Fast Company magazine detailed the company’s transformational work in the record music department, which redefines the relationship with artists and diversified its sources of income by expanding the business into the growth area of ​​the music business.
  • WMG established a cooperative relationship with MTV Networks in June 2010, allowing MTVN to exclusively sell WMG premium content advertisements; in turn, WMG video views are regarded as MTVN views.
  • In August 2011, Stephen Cooper took over as CEO of Warner Music Group, succeeding Edgar Bronfman Jr., who served as chairman of the company. Bronfman Jr. resigned as chairman of the company on January 31, 2012.
  • In May 2011, WMG announced that it was sold to Access Industries, a conglomerate controlled by Russian-born billionaire Len Blavatnik, for $3.3 billion in cash. According to the “Wall Street Journal” report, the transaction ended a three-month sale process, during which as many as 10 bidders, including Los Angeles brothers Tom and Alec Gores, and Sony Corp. competed for the company. Blavatnik was a shareholder and former board member of WMG at the time of the purchase announcement. The acquisition was completed on July 20, 2011, and Warner Music was privatized.
  • In October 2012, WMG became one of several major record companies signed with Google Music Services. It is also one of the last tags to reach an agreement with Spotify.
  • In June 2013, WMG entered Russia by acquiring Gala Records, the most famous long-term distributor of EMI.
  • In order to fulfill the deal reached with IMPALA and Merlin Network during the acquisition of Parlophone, WMG agreed to divert items worth more than $200 million in the catalog to independent record companies. These record companies must notify Warner Music Corporation of which catalogs of artists they are interested in acquiring by February 28, 2014, and say that the artists must approve the divestment. As of March 2015, more than 140 independent record companies had bid for more than 11,000 Warner Music artists, with a total value of US$6 billion, far higher than expected.
  • In March 2016, Curb Records acquired an 80% stake in Word Entertainment from Warner Music.
  • In April 2017, Warner Music agreed to sell independent distributor Zebralution to its founder.
  • On June 1, 2017, WMG sold catalogs of other artists, including Hot Chip and Buzzcocks to Domino Recording Company; Tom Waits to Anti-; Howard Jones, Dinosaur Jr., and Kim Wilde to Cherry Red Records; Cosmos Music Group acquired The copyrights of Per Gessle and Marie Fredriksson were acquired, and Neil Finn’s record catalog was moved to his Lester Records record company.
  • On July 6, 2017, because the music company (Because Music) acquired 10 French artists, most of the backup records of London Records and The Beta band, and Concord Music acquired Jewel, Sérgio Mendes, REM, and several rock and roll , Albums of blues and jazz artists.
  • In August 2017, Lemonheads and The Groundhogs were transferred to Fire Records.
  • In October 2017, Strut Records acquired Patrice Rushen and Miriam Makeba’s albums.
  • In November 2017, TI’s catalog has been reassigned to Cinq Music.
  • In October 2018, Warner Music Group announced the launch of WMG Boost Seed Venture Capital Fund. Several record companies of Warner Music entered the Los Angeles Arts District in 2019, where the company purchased the former Ford Motor Company assembly plant.
  • In January 2019, WMG and Doğan Media Group signed a Turkish distribution agreement, which will carry out physical and digital distribution on behalf of record companies.
  • In May 2019, Warner Music Finland acquired the hip-hop record company Monsp Records.
  • In July 2019, Warner Music Slovakia acquired Forza Music, which owns the former state-owned record company Opus Records.
  • On March 9, 2020, WMG expanded to India, established Warner Music India branch in Mumbai, and started business in other South Asian Regional Cooperation Association countries/regions.

Warner Music Group (WMG) investment:

Warner Music Group (NASDAQ: WMG) listed on the IPO on 6/3/2020, listed on Nasdaq, with an issue price of $25.00, 70 million shares issued, and 1.75 billion US dollars of funds raised, Morgan Stanley/ Credit Suisse/ Goldman Sachs/ BofA Securities/ Citigroup/ JP Morgan underwriting.

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