News February 6, 2019

The Greatest Showman soundtrack helped Warner Music hit new revenue heights in Q1

Staff Writer
The Greatest Showman soundtrack helped Warner Music hit new revenue heights in Q1

Warner Music Group’s recorded music revenue hit US$1 billion in its first fiscal quarter – a first-time achievement by the major.

The period ending December 31 saw a 15% rise year-on-year on a constant currency basis.

Streaming rose 24.3% to $502 million while physical sales bucked the trend with a 3.6% growth to $231 million.

Digital revenue expanded 17.6% (19.9% in constant currency) to $627 million and now represents 52.1% (from 51% in the previous quarter) of the major’s revenue split.

Major sellers included releases from Johnny Hallyday, Ed Sheeran, Michael Bublé, Kobukuro and The Greatest Showman soundtrack.

Music publishing revenue rose by $22 million to $165 million or 15.4% (18.7% at constant currency).

Publishing digital revenue was $65 million for the quarter.

Operating income was up 63% to $147 million, while operating income before depreciation and amortization reflected a 39% rise to $215 million.

In its report, Warner Music Group noted that the October 2017 acquisition of German merchandising company EMP for $180 million gave the recorded music division a net gain of $76 million.

This offset a drop in $24 million due to its selling off a concert promotion division and a change in its accounts procedure in booking revenue.

“I’m pleased that we are off to a great start for fiscal ‘19,” said Steve Cooper, Warner Music Group’s CEO.

“We have best in class operators working with amazing music from our extraordinary artists and songwriters across a diverse set of genres, generations and geographies.”

Warner Music Group’s total revenue in the quarter was $1.2 billion, which represented a growth of 15%.

In comparison, Sony’s recorded music revenue in the same three months was $1.039 billion.

Universal is yet to release its quarterly figures.

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