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Universal Music Group B.V. (often abbreviated as UMG) is a global music corporation that is majority owned by the French media conglomerate
Vivendi Vivendi SE is a French media conglomerate headquartered in Paris. Widely known as the owner of Universal Music Group, Groupe Canal+, Havas, Editis, Vivendi Village and Dailymotion, the company has activities in music, television, film, book publ ...
, with Chinese tech company
Tencent Tencent Holdings Ltd., also known as Tencent, is a Chinese multinational technology conglomerate holding company. Founded in 1998, its subsidiaries globally market various Internet-related services and products, including in entertainment, ar ...
owning a minority stake. UMG's corporate headquarters are located in Hilversum, Netherlands and its operational headquarters are located in
Santa Monica Santa Monica () is a beachfront city in western Los Angeles County, California, United States. Situated on Santa Monica Bay, it is bordered on five sides by different neighborhoods of the city of Los Angeles: Pacific Palisades to the north, Brent ...
, California. The biggest music company in the world, it is one of the " Big Three" record labels, along with
Sony Music Sony Music Entertainment (commonly referred to as Sony Music) is an American global music company. Owned by the Japanese conglomerate Sony Group Corporation, it is part of the Sony Music Group, which is owned by Sony Corporation of America. It w ...
and
Warner Music Group Warner Music Group Corp. (WMG) is an American multinational entertainment and record label conglomerate headquartered in New York City. It is one of the "big three" recording companies and the third-largest in the global music industry, after U ...
. Tencent acquired ten percent of Universal Music Group in March 2020 for €3 billion and acquired an additional ten percent stake in January 2021. In 2019, ''
Fast Company ''Fast Company'' is a monthly American business magazine published in print and online that focuses on technology, business, and design. It publishes eight print issues per year. History ''Fast Company'' was launched in November 1995 by Alan We ...
'' named Universal Music Group the most innovative music company and listed UMG among the Top 50 most innovative companies in the world and "amid the music industry's digital transformation, Universal is redefining what a modern label should look like." UMG has signed licensing agreements with more than 400 platforms worldwide.


History


Early history

The company's origins go back to the formation of the American branch of
Decca Records Decca Records is a British record label established in 1929 by Edward Lewis. Its U.S. label was established in late 1934 by Lewis, American Decca's first president Jack Kapp and later American Decca president Milton Rackmil. In 1937, anticipati ...

Decca Records
in September 1934. The Decca Record Co. Ltd. of England spun American Decca off in 1939. MCA Inc. merged with American Decca in 1962. In November 1990, Japanese multinational conglomerate
Matsushita Electric formerly known as , founded by Kōnosuke Matsushita in 1918 as a lightbulb socket manufacturer, is a major Japanese multinational electronics company, headquartered in Kadoma, Osaka. In addition to consumer electronics of which it was the world ...
agreed to acquire MCA for $6.59 billion. In 1995,
Seagram The Seagram Company Ltd. (which traded as Seagram's) was a Canadian multinational conglomerate formerly headquartered in Montreal, Quebec. Originally a distiller of Canadian whisky based in Waterloo, Ontario, it was once (in the 1990s) the large ...
acquired 80 percent of MCA from Matsushita. On December 9, 1996, the company was renamed Universal Studios, Inc., and its music division was renamed Universal Music Group; MCA Records continued as a label within the Universal Music Group. In May 1998, Seagram purchased
PolyGram#REDIRECT PolyGram#REDIRECT PolyGram {{Redirect category shell, 1= {{R from different capitalization ...
{{Redirect category shell, 1= {{R from different capitalization ...
and merged it with Universal Music Group in early 1999.


Vivendi subsidiary

In May 2004, Universal Music Group was cast under separate management from Universal Studios, when French media conglomerate
Vivendi Vivendi SE is a French media conglomerate headquartered in Paris. Widely known as the owner of Universal Music Group, Groupe Canal+, Havas, Editis, Vivendi Village and Dailymotion, the company has activities in music, television, film, book publ ...
sold 80% of the latter to
General Electric General Electric Company (GE) is an American multinational conglomerate incorporated in New York City and headquartered in Boston. , the company operates through the following segments: aviation, healthcare, power, renewable energy, digital in ...
, who subsequently merged it with
NBC The National Broadcasting Company (NBC) is an American English-language commercial terrestrial radio and television network owned by NBCUniversal, a subsidiary of Comcast. The network is headquartered at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York City, ...
to form
NBCUniversal NBCUniversal Media, LLC is an American mass media and entertainment conglomerate owned by Comcast and headquartered at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in Midtown Manhattan, New York City. NBCUniversal is primarily involved in the media and entertainment indu ...
. This came two months after the separation of
Warner Music Group Warner Music Group Corp. (WMG) is an American multinational entertainment and record label conglomerate headquartered in New York City. It is one of the "big three" recording companies and the third-largest in the global music industry, after U ...
from
Time Warner Warner Media, LLC, doing business as WarnerMedia, is an American multinational mass media and entertainment conglomerate corporation owned by AT&T and headquartered in New York City, United States. It was originally formed in 1990 by Steve Ross ...

Time Warner
. In February 2006, Vivendi purchased the remaining 20 percent of UMG from Matsushita Electric. On September 6, 2006, Vivendi announced its €1.63 billion ($2.4 billion) purchase of
BMG Music Publishing Bertelsmann Music Group (BMG) was a division of German media company Bertelsmann before its completion of sale of the majority of its assets to Sony Corporation of America on 1 October 2008. Although it was established in 1987, the music compan ...
; after receiving European Union regulatory approval, the acquisition was completed on June 25, 2007.


2007–2012 and EMI purchase

In June 2007, UMG acquired Sanctuary, which eventually became UMG's entertainment merchandising and brand management division, Bravado. The company represents artists such as Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, and Kanye West, and has partnered with retailers including
Barneys Barneys New York Inc. was an American luxury department store brand, founded in 1923 in New York City. It introduced major luxury brands including Armani, Azzedine Alaïa, Comme des Garçons, Christian Louboutin, Gregory Herman and Ermenegildo Zegn ...
,
Bloomingdale's Bloomingdale's Inc. is an American luxury department store chain; it was founded by Joseph B. and Lyman G. Bloomingdale in 1861. It became a division of the Cincinnati-based "Federated Department Stores" in 1930 under then-president Samuel Bloomi ...
and
Selfridges Selfridges, also known as Selfridges & Co., is a chain of high-end department stores in the United Kingdom that is operated by Canadian group Selfridges Retail Limited, part of the Selfridges Group of department stores. It was founded by Harry G ...
. In 2008, Universal Music Group agreed to make its catalog available to
Spotify Spotify (/ˈspɒtɪfaɪ/; Swedish: spɔ̂tːɪfaj, is a Swedish audio streaming and media services provider, founded in 2006 by Daniel Ek. Spotify is incorporated in Luxembourg as Spotify Technology S.A, and is headquartered in Stockholm, Swed ...
, then a new streaming service, for use outside the U.S. on a limited basis. With Lucian Grainge's appointment as CEO at UMG, Max Hole was promoted to COO of UMGI, effective July 1, 2010.
Doug Morris Doug Morris (born November 23, 1938) is an American record executive. He is the current chairman of 12Tone Music Group. He previously served as chairman and CEO of the Universal Music Group from 1995 to 2011 and Sony Music Entertainment from 201 ...
stepped down from his position as CEO on January 1, 2011. Former chairman/CEO of Universal Music International
Lucian Grainge Sir Lucian Charles Grainge (born 29 February 1960) is the chairman and chief executive officer of Universal Music Group. Over the course of his career, he has worked with artists including Lady Gaga, Amy Winehouse, ABBA, Eurythmics, Rihanna, Sam ...
was promoted to CEO of the company. Grainge later replaced him as chairman on March 9, 2011. Morris became the next chairman of
Sony Music Entertainment Sony Music Entertainment (commonly referred to as Sony Music) is an American global music company. Owned by the Japanese conglomerate Sony Group Corporation, it is part of the Sony Music Group, which is owned by Sony Corporation of America. It w ...
on July 1, 2011. With Grainge's appointment as CEO at UMG,
Max Hole Christopher Charles Maximilian Hole CBE (born 26 May 1951) is chairman and CEO of UMGI (International division of Universal Music Group) since 1 January 2013. He previously held the role of chief operating officer for UMGI (International division ...
was promoted to COO of UMGI, effective July 1, 2010. Starting in 2011 UMG's
Interscope Geffen A&M Records Interscope Geffen A&M Records (IGA), also known as A&M Records Group, is an American umbrella label owned by Universal Music Group, consisting of record labels Interscope Records, Geffen Records, and A&M Records. History Interscope Geffen A&M Rec ...
began signing contestants from ''
American Idol ''American Idol'' is an American singing competition television series created by Simon Fuller, produced by Fremantle North America and 19 Entertainment, and distributed by Fremantle North America. It initially aired on Fox from June 11, 2002, ...
''. In January 2011, UMG announced it was donating 200,000 master recordings from the 1920s to 1940s to the
Library of Congress The Library of Congress (LC) is the research library that officially serves the United States Congress and is the ''de facto'' national library of the United States. It is the oldest federal cultural institution in the United States. The libra ...
for preservation. In 2011, EMI agreed to sell its recorded music operations to Universal Music Group for £1.2 billion ($1.9 billion) and its music publishing operations to a
Sony is a Japanese multinational conglomerate corporation headquartered in Kōnan, Minato, Tokyo. The company operates as one of the world's largest manufacturers of consumer and professional electronic products, the largest video game console ...
-led consortium for $2.2 billion. Among the other companies that had competed for the recorded music business was
Warner Music Group Warner Music Group Corp. (WMG) is an American multinational entertainment and record label conglomerate headquartered in New York City. It is one of the "big three" recording companies and the third-largest in the global music industry, after U ...
which was reported to have made a $2 billion bid.
IMPALA The impala (, ''Aepyceros melampus'') is a medium-sized antelope found in eastern and southern Africa. The sole member of the genus ''Aepyceros'', it was first described to European audiences by German zoologist Hinrich Lichtenstein in 1812. T ...
opposed the merger. In March 2012, the European Union opened an investigation into the acquisition The EU asked rivals and consumer groups whether the deal would result in higher prices and shut out competitors. On September 21, 2012, the sale of EMI to UMG was approved in Europe and the United States by the
European Commission The European Commission (EC) is the executive branch of the European Union, responsible for proposing legislation, implementing decisions, upholding the EU treaties and managing the day-to-day business of the EU. Commissioners swear an oath at t ...

European Commission
and
Federal Trade Commission The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is an independent agency of the United States government whose principal mission is the enforcement of civil (non-criminal) U.S. antitrust law and the promotion of consumer protection. The Commission is headed ...
respectively. However, the European Commission approved the deal only under the condition the merged company divest one third of its total operations to other companies with a proven track record in the music industry. UMG divested
Mute Records Mute Records Ltd. is a British independent record label owned and founded in 1978 by Daniel Miller. It has featured several prominent musical acts on its roster such as Depeche Mode, Erasure, Fad Gadget, Goldfrapp, Grinderman, Inspiral Carpets, M ...
,
Parlophone Parlophone Records Limited (also known as Parlophone Records and Parlophone) is a German–British record label founded in Germany in 1896 by the Carl Lindström Company as Parlophon. The British branch of the label was founded on 8 August 1923 ...
,
Roxy Recordings King Island Roxystars Recordings AB, more known as Roxy Recordings, or Roxy is an independent record label based in Kungsholmen, Stockholm, Sweden where their office is the former site of Cheiron Studios and its successor The Location. It was boug ...
,
MPS Records MPS Records was a German jazz record company and label founded in 1968 by Hans Georg Brunner-Schwer. MPS stands for "Musik Produktion Schwarzwald" (Music Production Black Forest). History Originally based in Villingen, MPS was founded as the succes ...
,
Cooperative Music IASCooperative, formerly Cooperative Music, often referred to as Co-Op, is a group of indie labels based in the UK but that have offices around the world, owned by IAS Through their partner labels IASCooperative work with artists like iamamiwhoa ...
,
Now That's What I Call Music! ''Now That's What I Call Music!'' (often shortened to ''Now!'') is a series of various artists compilation albums released in the United Kingdom and Ireland by Sony Music and Universal Music (Universal/Sony Music) which began in 1983. Spinoff ...
, Jazzland, Universal Greece,
Sanctuary Records Sanctuary Records Group Limited was a record label based in the United Kingdom and a subsidiary of BMG Rights Management. Until June 2007, it was the largest independent record label in the UK and the largest music management company in the worl ...
,
Chrysalis Records Chrysalis Records () is a British record label that was created in 1968. The name was both a reference to the pupal stage of a butterfly and a combination of its founders' names, Chris Wright and Terry Ellis. It started as the Ellis-Wright Agenc ...
,
EMI Classics EMI Classics was a record label founded by EMI in 1990 in order to reduce the need to create country-specific packaging and catalogues for internationally distributed classical music releases. Following the European Commission's approval of th ...
,
Virgin ClassicsVirgin Classics was a record label founded in 1988 as part of Richard Branson's Virgin Records. The unit, along with EMI Classics, was acquired by Universal Music in 2012 as part of the takeover of the EMI Group, however the terms of the European Co ...
, and EMI's European regional labels to comply with this condition. UMG retained
The Beatles The Beatles were an English rock band formed in Liverpool in 1960. The group, whose best-known line-up comprised John Lennon, Paul McCartney, George Harrison and Ringo Starr, are regarded as the most influential band of all time. They were int ...
(formerly of Parlophone) and
Robbie Williams Robert Peter Williams (born 13 February 1974) is an English singer-songwriter and entertainer. He found fame as a member of the pop group Take That from 1990 to 1995, but achieved greater commercial success with his solo career, beginning in ...

Robbie Williams
(formerly of Chrysalis). The Beatles catalogue was transferred to UMG's newly formed
Calderstone Productions Calderstone Productions is the London-based subsidiary of the Universal Music Group that administers the Beatles' recorded music output which was originally owned by EMI and released on EMI's Parlophone Records (in the United Kingdom)/Capitol Recor ...
, while Williams' catalogue was transferred to
Island Records Island Records is a British-Jamaican record label owned by Universal Music Group. It was founded in 1959 by Chris Blackwell, Graeme Goodall, and Leslie Kong in Jamaica, and was eventually sold to PolyGram in 1989. Island and A&M Records, anoth ...
.


2012–2017: EMI integration and divisions reorganization

Universal Music Group completed their acquisition of EMI on September 28, 2012. In November 2012, Steve Barnett was appointed chairman and CEO of
Capitol Music Group Capitol Music Group (abbreviated as CMG) is an American front line umbrella label owned by the Universal Music Group (UMG). The company is run by Chairman & CEO Jeff Vaughn. It oversees handling of record labels assigned to UMG's Capitol Records div ...
. He formerly served as COO of
Columbia Records Columbia Records is an American record label owned by Sony Music Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, the North American division of Japanese conglomerate Sony. It was founded on January 15, 1889, evolving from the America ...
. In compliance the conditions of the European Commission after purchase of EMI, Universal Music Group sold the Mute catalogue to the German-based
BMG Rights Management BMG Rights Management GmbH (also known simply as BMG) is an international music company based in Berlin, Germany. It combines the activities of a music publisher and a record label. BMG was founded in October 2008 after Bertelsmann sold its sta ...
on December 22, 2012. Two months later, BMG acquired
Sanctuary Records Sanctuary Records Group Limited was a record label based in the United Kingdom and a subsidiary of BMG Rights Management. Until June 2007, it was the largest independent record label in the UK and the largest music management company in the worl ...
for €50 million. On February 8, 2013,
Warner Music Group Warner Music Group Corp. (WMG) is an American multinational entertainment and record label conglomerate headquartered in New York City. It is one of the "big three" recording companies and the third-largest in the global music industry, after U ...
acquired the Parlophone Label Group (consisting of
Parlophone Records Parlophone Records Limited (also known as Parlophone Records and Parlophone) is a German–British record label founded in Germany in 1896 by the Carl Lindström Company as Parlophon. The British branch of the label was founded on 8 August 1923 ...
,
Chrysalis Records Chrysalis Records () is a British record label that was created in 1968. The name was both a reference to the pupal stage of a butterfly and a combination of its founders' names, Chris Wright and Terry Ellis. It started as the Ellis-Wright Agenc ...
,
EMI Classics EMI Classics was a record label founded by EMI in 1990 in order to reduce the need to create country-specific packaging and catalogues for internationally distributed classical music releases. Following the European Commission's approval of th ...
,
Virgin ClassicsVirgin Classics was a record label founded in 1988 as part of Richard Branson's Virgin Records. The unit, along with EMI Classics, was acquired by Universal Music in 2012 as part of the takeover of the EMI Group, however the terms of the European Co ...
and EMI Records' Belgian, Czech, Danish, French, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Slovak and Swedish divisions) for $765 million (£487 million). Later in February,
Sony Music Entertainment Sony Music Entertainment (commonly referred to as Sony Music) is an American global music company. Owned by the Japanese conglomerate Sony Group Corporation, it is part of the Sony Music Group, which is owned by Sony Corporation of America. It w ...
acquired UMG's European share in ''
Now That's What I Call Music ''Now That's What I Call Music!'' (often shortened to ''Now!'') is a series of various artists compilation albums released in the United Kingdom and Ireland by Sony Music and Universal Music (Universal/Sony Music) which began in 1983. Spinoff ...
'' for approximately $60 million. Play It Again Sam acquired Co-Operative Music for £500,000 in March 2013. With EMI's absorption into Universal Music complete, its British operations consist of five label units: Island, Polydor, Decca, Virgin EMI and Capitol. In the Greek market, as part of its divesture plans, Universal Music retained Minos EMI and sold Universal Music Greece to Greek investors who renamed it Cobalt Music.
Edel AG Edel SE & Co. KGaA is a German independent media company based in Hamburg. As a label and publishing group, it also operates marketing and sales for artists and smaller music labels. The repertoire of the Edel labels includes dance, rock and pop ...
acquired the MPS catalogue from Universal in January 2014. On March 20, 2013, UMG announced the worldwide extension of their exclusive distribution deal with the
Disney Music Group Disney Music Group (DMG) is the music recording arm of Disney Platform Distribution, a division of The Walt Disney Company. It is located at the studio's headquarters in Burbank, California. The division's subsidiaries consist of two owned record la ...
, excluding Japan. As a result of this deal DMG's labels and artists have access to UMG's roster of producers and songwriters on a worldwide basis. The exclusive deal also saw UMG granted unlimited access to all rights pertaining to Disney's 85-year back catalog of soundtracks and albums. On April 2, 2013, the gospel music divisions of
Motown Records Motown Records is an American record label owned by the Universal Music Group. It was founded by Berry Gordy Jr. as Tamla Records on January 12, 1959, and incorporated as Motown Record Corporation on April 14, 1960. Its name, a portmanteau of ...
and EMI merged to form a new label called Motown Gospel. In May 2013, Japanese company
SoftBank is a Japanese multinational conglomerate holding company headquartered in Minato, Tokyo. SoftBank owns stakes in many technology, energy, and financial companies. It also runs Vision Fund, the world's largest technology-focused venture capital f ...
offered $8.5 billion to Vivendi for the acquisition of UMG, but Vivendi rejected it. In July 2018, JPMorgan said that UMG could be worth as much as $40 billion and then increased the valuation to $50 billion in 2019. In August 2013, UMG became the first company in the US to have nine of the Top 10 songs on the digital charts, according to
SoundScan MRC Data (formerly Nielsen SoundScan and Nielsen Music Products) is a provider of music sales data. Established by Mike Fine and Mike Shalett in 1991, data is collected weekly and made available every Sunday (for albums sales) and every Monday (fo ...
and weeks later, became the first company to hold all 10 of the Top 10 spots on the ''Billboard'' Hot 100 Chart. In September 2013, UMG received a
SAG-AFTRA The Screen Actors Guild - American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (SAG-AFTRA ) is an American labor union representing approximately 160,000 film and television actors, journalists, radio personalities, recording artists, singers, voice ...
American Scene Award for the company's commitment to diversity as exemplified by its "entire catalog and roster of artists." On April 1, 2014, Universal Music announced the disbandment of Island Def Jam Music, one of four operational umbrella groups within Universal Music. Universal CEO
Lucian Grainge Sir Lucian Charles Grainge (born 29 February 1960) is the chairman and chief executive officer of Universal Music Group. Over the course of his career, he has worked with artists including Lady Gaga, Amy Winehouse, ABBA, Eurythmics, Rihanna, Sam ...
said of the closure, "No matter how much we might work to build 'IDJ' as a brand, that brand could never be as powerful as each of IDJ's constituent parts."
Island Records Island Records is a British-Jamaican record label owned by Universal Music Group. It was founded in 1959 by Chris Blackwell, Graeme Goodall, and Leslie Kong in Jamaica, and was eventually sold to PolyGram in 1989. Island and A&M Records, anoth ...
and
Def Jam Def Jam Recordings is an American multinational record label based in Manhattan. Def Jam has focused predominantly on hip hop, pop and urban music, owned by Universal Music Group. In the UK, the label was known as Def Jam UK and was operated thro ...
now operate as autonomous record labels. David Massey and Bartels, who worked respectively at Island and Def Jam Records, were named to the new record labels independently.
Barry Weiss Barry Weiss (born February 11, 1959) is an American music executive and producer who is currently an executive with RECORDS, a label he co-founded. He got his start at Clive Calder's Jive Records before working his way up to the head of the RCA/J ...
, who previously moved from
Sony Music Sony Music Entertainment (commonly referred to as Sony Music) is an American global music company. Owned by the Japanese conglomerate Sony Group Corporation, it is part of the Sony Music Group, which is owned by Sony Corporation of America. It w ...
to lead Island Def Jam Music in 2012 when
Motown Records Motown Records is an American record label owned by the Universal Music Group. It was founded by Berry Gordy Jr. as Tamla Records on January 12, 1959, and incorporated as Motown Record Corporation on April 14, 1960. Its name, a portmanteau of ...
was incorporated into Island Def Jam, stepped down from Universal Music. Additionally, as part of the changes to the labels, Motown Records transferred to Los Angeles to become part of the
Capitol Music Group Capitol Music Group (abbreviated as CMG) is an American front line umbrella label owned by the Universal Music Group (UMG). The company is run by Chairman & CEO Jeff Vaughn. It oversees handling of record labels assigned to UMG's Capitol Records div ...
and previous Vice President Ethiopia Habtemariam was promoted to Label President for Motown Records. Universal Music Group entered into film and TV production with the 2014 purchase of
Eagle Rock Entertainment Eagle Rock Entertainment is an international producer and distributor of music films and programming. It operates two record labels (Eagle Records and Armoury Records), a full-service production company (Eagle Rock Productions) and a music publish ...
. UMG's first major film production was '' Amy'', which won an Oscar for Best Documentary, while taking part in '' Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck'' and '' The Beatles: Eight Days a Week'' documentaries. In January 2016, UMG hired David Blackman from Laurence Mark Production where he was president of production as head of film and television development and production, and theater producer Scott Landis as special advisor on theatrical development and production. UMG Executive Vice President Michele Anthony and Universal Music Publishing Group Chairman and CEO Jody Gerson have oversight of the pair. On February 11, 2017,
PolyGram Entertainment#REDIRECT PolyGram {{Redirect category shell, 1= {{R from different capitalization ...
was relaunched as a film and television unit of Universal Music Group under David Blackman. In 2015, UMG's
Capitol Records Capitol Records (legal name: Capitol Records, LLC, until 2007 Capitol Records Inc.) is an American record label owned by Universal Music Group through its Capitol Music Group imprint. It was founded as the first west coast–based record label of ...
earned all the major
Grammy Awards The Grammy Award (stylized as GRAMMY, originally called Gramophone Award), or just Grammy, is an award presented by the Recording Academy to recognize achievement in the music industry. The trophy depicts a gilded gramophone. The annual prese ...
for the year, with
Sam Smith Samuel Frederick Smith (born 19 May 1992) is an English singer and songwriter. They rose to prominence in October 2012 after being featured on Disclosure's breakthrough single "Latch", which peaked at number eleven on the UK Singles Chart. Sm ...
receiving
Best New Artist The Grammy Award for Best New Artist has been awarded since 1959. Years reflect the year in which the Grammy Awards were handed out, for records released in the previous year. The award was not presented in 1967. The official guidelines are as fo ...
,
Record of the Year The Grammy Award for Record of the Year is presented by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences of the United States to "honor artistic achievement, technical proficiency and overall excellence in the recording industry, without rega ...
and Song of the Year awards and
Beck is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Harold Sakuishi. It was originally serialized in ''Monthly Shōnen Magazine'' from 1999 to 2008, with the 103 chapters later published into 34 tankōbon volumes by Kodansha. It tells t ...
winning Album of the Year. In March 2016, Universal Music Canada donated the archives of EMI Music Canada to the
University of Calgary A university ( la, universitas, 'a whole') is an institution of higher (or tertiary) education and research which awards academic degrees in various academic disciplines. Universities typically offer both undergraduate and postgraduate programs. ...
. In May 2016, UMG acquired Famehouse, a digital marketing agency. That same year,
Paul McCartney Sir James Paul McCartney (born 18 June 1942) is an English singer, songwriter, musician, and record and film producer who gained worldwide fame as co-lead vocalist and bassist for the Beatles. His songwriting partnership with John Lennon remai ...

Paul McCartney
and the
Bee Gees The Bee Gees were a music group formed in 1958, featuring brothers Barry, Robin, and Maurice Gibb. The trio were especially successful as a popular music act in the late 1960s and early 1970s, and later as prominent performers of the disco mu ...
both signed to UMG's Capitol Records, including their catalog releases. In April 2017, UMG signed a new multi-year licensing agreement with
Spotify Spotify (/ˈspɒtɪfaɪ/; Swedish: spɔ̂tːɪfaj, is a Swedish audio streaming and media services provider, founded in 2006 by Daniel Ek. Spotify is incorporated in Luxembourg as Spotify Technology S.A, and is headquartered in Stockholm, Swed ...
, the world's leading streaming service, and in May 2017, UMG signed a deal with
Tencent Tencent Holdings Ltd., also known as Tencent, is a Chinese multinational technology conglomerate holding company. Founded in 1998, its subsidiaries globally market various Internet-related services and products, including in entertainment, ar ...
, China's biggest gaming and social media firm. In July 2017, "
Despacito "Despacito" (; ) is a song by Puerto Rican singer Luis Fonsi featuring Puerto Rican rapper Daddy Yankee from Fonsi's 2019 studio album ''Vida''. Released on January 12, 2017, the song was written by Fonsi, Erika Ender and Daddy Yankee, and produ ...
" by
Luis Fonsi Luis Alfonso Rodríguez López-Cepero (born April 15, 1978), known by his stage name Luis Fonsi (), is a Puerto Rican musician, singer and songwriter. He is known for multiple songs, one of them being "Despacito" featuring Puerto Rican rapper Dad ...
,
Daddy Yankee Ramón Luis Ayala Rodríguez (born February 3, 1976), known professionally as Daddy Yankee, is a Puerto Rican singer, rapper, songwriter, actor, and record producer. He was born in Río Piedras, Puerto Rico, and was raised in the Villa Kennedy ...
and featuring
Justin Bieber Justin Drew Bieber (; born March 1, 1994) is a Canadian singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. Bieber was discovered by American record executive Scooter Braun and signed with RBMG Records in 2008, gaining recognition with the release ...

Justin Bieber
, became the most streamed track of all time. By 2018, the song had broken several ''
Guinness World Records ''Guinness World Records'', known from its inception in 1955 until 1999 as ''The Guinness Book of Records'' and in previous United States editions as ''The Guinness Book of World Records'', is a reference book published annually, listing world r ...
'', including Most Weeks at Number 1 on Billboard Hot Latin Songs chart and most-viewed video online. In August 2017, UMG and Grace/Beyond agreed to develop three new music-based television series, ''27'', ''Melody Island'' and ''Mixtape''. ''27'' would focus on musicians at the age of 27, an age at which several iconic musicians died. ''Melody Island'' was an animated series based on tropical island music with live craft segments. ''Mixtape'' had twelve episodes, with each episode connected to a song. In October 2017, UMG announced the launch of its Accelerator Engagement Network, an initiative aimed to help develop music-based startups around the world. In November 2017,
USC Annenberg 250px, Entrance to the Annenberg School for Communication & Journalism The USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism comprises a School of Communication and a School of Journalism at the University of Southern California (USC). Starting ...
announced UMG's partnership in the "Annenberg Inclusion Initiative", becoming the first music company to do so. The initiative is meant to create change for representation of women and underrepresented racial and ethnic groups in the media industry. In December 2017, Universal Music Group acquired Stiff and ZTT labels, along with Perfect Songs Publishing, from
Trevor Horn Trevor Charles Horn (born 15 July 1949) is a British music producer, label and recording studio owner, songwriter, singer and bassist. He is best known for his production work in the 1980s, and for being one half of the new wave band the Buggle ...

Trevor Horn
's SPZ Group;
BMG Rights Management BMG Rights Management GmbH (also known simply as BMG) is an international music company based in Berlin, Germany. It combines the activities of a music publisher and a record label. BMG was founded in October 2008 after Bertelsmann sold its sta ...
, through Union Square Music subsidiary, retained its back catalogues. That same month, UMG signed a global, multi-year agreement with Facebook becoming the first of The " Big Three" to license its recorded music and publishing catalogs for video and other social experiences across
Facebook Facebook (stylized as ) is an American online social media and social networking service based in Menlo Park, California, and a flagship service of the namesake company Facebook, Inc. It was founded by Mark Zuckerberg, along with fellow Harvard ...

Facebook
,
Instagram Instagram (commonly abbreviated to IG or Insta) is an American photo and video sharing social networking service created by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger. In April 2012, Facebook acquired the service for approximately US$1 billion in cash ...

Instagram
and
Oculus An oculus (plural oculi, from Latin ', 'eye') is a circular opening in the center of a dome or in a wall. Originating in antiquity, it is a feature of Byzantine and Neoclassical architecture. It is also known as an ''œil-de-boeuf'' from the F ...
. Sony and Warner signed similar contracts with Facebook the following year. Furthermore, on December 19, 2017 UMG signed a multi-year licensing agreement with
YouTube#REDIRECT YouTube {{R from miscapitalization ...


2018–present

In June 2018,
Universal Music Japan Universal Music Group owns, or has a joint share in, many of the record labels listed herein. Interscope Geffen A&M Records Interscope Records *Aftermath Entertainment *Shady Records *F2 Records *Maloof Musi *Top Dawg Entertainment *Downtow ...
announced an exclusive license agreement with
Disney Music Group Disney Music Group (DMG) is the music recording arm of Disney Platform Distribution, a division of The Walt Disney Company. It is located at the studio's headquarters in Burbank, California. The division's subsidiaries consist of two owned record la ...
. With the addition of Japan, UMG distributes releases from Disney Music Group globally. In July,
The Rolling Stones The Rolling Stones are an English rock band formed in London in 1962. Diverging from the popular pop rock of the early-1960s, the Rolling Stones pioneered the gritty, heavier-driven sound that came to define hard rock. Their first stable ...
signed a worldwide agreement with UMG covering the band's recorded music and audio-visual catalogues, archival support, global merchandising and brand management. That same month, Vivendi announced it would explore selling as much as half of Universal Music Group to one or more investors. In Nielsen's 2018 US Music Mid-Year report, UMG made history with eight of the Top 10 artists, including all of the top five, as well as all of the top eight artists ranked by on-demand audio streams. In August 2018, UMG announced a strategic expansion in Africa, opening an office in
Abidjan Abidjan ( , ; N’ko: ߊߓߌߖߊ߲߬) is the economic capital of Côte d'Ivoire and one of the most populous French-speaking cities in Africa. According to the 2014 census, Abidjan's population was 4.7 million, which is 20 percent of the ove ...

Abidjan
to oversee French-speaking Africa, and also unveiling a Universal Music Nigera office in
Lagos Lagos (Nigerian English: ; ) is the most populous city in Nigeria and the second largest city in Africa after Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo. With a total population of 14,862,000 as of 2021 within the city proper, the Lagos metro ...
to focus on signing local artists and taking them global. In September 2018, singer
Elton John Sir Elton Hercules John (born Reginald Kenneth Dwight; 25 March 1947) is an English singer, songwriter, pianist, and composer. Collaborating with lyricist Bernie Taupin since 1967 on more than 30 albums, John has sold over 300million records, ...

Elton John
signed a global partnership agreement with UMG across recorded music, music publishing, brand management, and licensing rights. On November 19, 2018, singer-songwriter
Taylor Swift Taylor Alison Swift (born December 13, 1989) is an American singer-songwriter. Her narrative songwriting, which often takes inspiration from her personal life, has received widespread critical praise and media coverage. Born in West Reading, ...

Taylor Swift
signed a new multi-album deal with UMG, in the United States, her future releases will be promoted under the
Republic Records Republic Records is a record label owned by Universal Music Group (UMG). It was founded by Avery Lipman and Monte Lipman as an independent label in 1995, and was acquired by UMG in 2000. Republic was initially an imprint of the Universal/Motown R ...
imprint. In addition to the promised ownership of her master recordings, UMG agreed to, in the event that it sells portions of its stake in
Spotify Spotify (/ˈspɒtɪfaɪ/; Swedish: spɔ̂tːɪfaj, is a Swedish audio streaming and media services provider, founded in 2006 by Daniel Ek. Spotify is incorporated in Luxembourg as Spotify Technology S.A, and is headquartered in Stockholm, Swed ...
, distribute proceeds among its artists and make them non-recoupable. In December 2018, Queen's "
Bohemian Rhapsody "Bohemian Rhapsody" is a song by the British rock band Queen. It was written by Freddie Mercury for the band's 1975 album ''A Night at the Opera''. The song is a six-minute suite, notable for its lack of a refraining chorus and consisting of sev ...

Bohemian Rhapsody
" became the most-streamed song from the pre-streaming era and the most-streamed classic rock song of all time. In February 2019, UMG fully acquired music distributor
INgrooves Ingrooves Music Group is a leading global independent triple a music marketings services and distribution companies which provides custom services for artists and independent record labels, owned by Universal Music Group. The company's three divisi ...
. UMG was named to ''Fast Company's'' annual list of the World's 50 Most Innovative Companies for 2019, the first major music company to be included on the list in a decade. UMG is also ranked number 1 in the music category. UMG was named by ''
Forbes ''Forbes'' () is an American business magazine owned by Integrated Whale Media Investments and the Forbes family. Published eight times a year, it features original articles on finance, industry, investing, and marketing topics. ''Forbes'' al ...
'' as one of America's Best Midsize Employers in 2019. In June, YouTube and UMG announced that they were upgrading more than 1,000 popular music videos to high definition, releasing them through 2020. In August 2019,
Tencent Tencent Holdings Ltd., also known as Tencent, is a Chinese multinational technology conglomerate holding company. Founded in 1998, its subsidiaries globally market various Internet-related services and products, including in entertainment, ar ...
and Vivendi started negotiation to sell 10% Vivendi's stake of Universal Music to Tencent. The deal is expected to be of $3.36 billion. The company and
Lego Group Lego System A/S (trade name: The Lego Group) is a Danish toy production company based in Billund. It is best known for the manufacture of Lego-brand toys, consisting mostly of interlocking plastic bricks. The Lego Group has also built several a ...
announced a music product partnership on April 26, 2020. On June 16, 2020, Universal rebranded Virgin EMI Records as EMI Records and named Rebecca Allen (former president of UMG's Decca label) as the label's president, bringing back the EMI brand. Same day, UMG announced launch of its new affiliates in Morocco and Israel.


Labels


Vevo

Universal Music Group co-developed
Vevo Vevo ( , an abbreviation for "Video evolution") is an American multinational video hosting service founded on June 16, 2009, as a joint venture among three major record companies: Universal Music Group (UMG), Sony Music Entertainment (SME) and EMI ...
, a site designed for music videos inspired by Hulu.com, which similarly allows free ad-supported streaming of videos and other music content. On May 24, 2018,
Vevo Vevo ( , an abbreviation for "Video evolution") is an American multinational video hosting service founded on June 16, 2009, as a joint venture among three major record companies: Universal Music Group (UMG), Sony Music Entertainment (SME) and EMI ...
announced that it would no longer continue distributing videos to Vevo.com, instead opting to primarily focus on YouTube syndication.


Locations


Los Angeles metropolitan area


Santa Monica

UMG's operational headquarters are located in
Santa Monica Santa Monica () is a beachfront city in western Los Angeles County, California, United States. Situated on Santa Monica Bay, it is bordered on five sides by different neighborhoods of the city of Los Angeles: Pacific Palisades to the north, Brent ...
.
Interscope-Geffen-A&M Interscope Geffen A&M Records (IGA), also known as A&M Records Group, is an American umbrella label owned by Universal Music Group, consisting of record labels Interscope Records, Geffen Records, and A&M Records. History Interscope Geffen A&M Rec ...
and Universal Music Enterprises (UME), the company's catalog division, are headquartered in Santa Monica.
Def Jam Def Jam Recordings is an American multinational record label based in Manhattan. Def Jam has focused predominantly on hip hop, pop and urban music, owned by Universal Music Group. In the UK, the label was known as Def Jam UK and was operated thro ...
,
Island upright=1.15, Ireland (left) and Great Britain (right), are large islands of north-west Europe image:Small Island in Lower Saranac Lake.jpg, A small island in Lower Saranac Lake in the Adirondacks, New York state, U.S. Bangchuidao Isla ...
and
Republic Records Republic Records is a record label owned by Universal Music Group (UMG). It was founded by Avery Lipman and Monte Lipman as an independent label in 1995, and was acquired by UMG in 2000. Republic was initially an imprint of the Universal/Motown R ...
also maintain offices there. UMG chairman & CEO
Lucian Grainge Sir Lucian Charles Grainge (born 29 February 1960) is the chairman and chief executive officer of Universal Music Group. Over the course of his career, he has worked with artists including Lady Gaga, Amy Winehouse, ABBA, Eurythmics, Rihanna, Sam ...
is based at the company's Santa Monica offices.
Universal Music Publishing Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG) is a North American music publishing company and is part of the Universal Music Group, a subsidiary of Vivendi and Tencent. It was formerly known as MCA Music Publishing until it merged with PolyGram. Univ ...
is also headquartered in the city.


Hollywood

Capitol Music Group Capitol Music Group (abbreviated as CMG) is an American front line umbrella label owned by the Universal Music Group (UMG). The company is run by Chairman & CEO Jeff Vaughn. It oversees handling of record labels assigned to UMG's Capitol Records div ...
is headquartered at the
Capitol Records Building The Capitol Records Building, also known as the Capitol Records Tower, is a 13-story tower building in Hollywood, Los Angeles. Designed by Louis Naidorf of Welton Becket Associates, it is one of the city's landmarks. Construction began soon after ...

Capitol Records Building
in Hollywood.
Universal Music Latin Entertainment Universal Music Latin Entertainment, a division of Universal Music Group (Vivendi), is a record company specialized in producing and distributing Latin music in Mexico, the United States, and Puerto Rico. UMLE includes famous Latin music labels su ...
is also headquartered in Hollywood.


Woodland Hills

Universal Music Group operates a secondary office in Woodland Hills that includes finance, royalty, and operations functions.


Miami

Universal Music Latin America is headquartered in
Miami, Florida Miami (), officially the City of Miami, is a coastal metropolis located in southeastern Florida in the United States. It is the third most populous metropolis on the East coast of the United States, and it is the seventh largest in the country. ...
.


Nashville

Universal Music Group Nashville is headquartered in
Nashville, Tennessee Nashville is the capital and most populous city of the U.S. state of Tennessee. The city is the county seat of Davidson County and is located on the Cumberland River. It is the 23rd most-populous city in the United States. Named for Francis Nash ...
.


New York City

UMG has offices in New York City where
Island Records Island Records is a British-Jamaican record label owned by Universal Music Group. It was founded in 1959 by Chris Blackwell, Graeme Goodall, and Leslie Kong in Jamaica, and was eventually sold to PolyGram in 1989. Island and A&M Records, anoth ...
,
Def Jam Recordings Def Jam Recordings is an American multinational record label based in Manhattan. Def Jam has focused predominantly on hip hop, pop and urban music, owned by Universal Music Group. In the UK, the label was known as Def Jam UK and was operated thro ...
,
Republic Records Republic Records is a record label owned by Universal Music Group (UMG). It was founded by Avery Lipman and Monte Lipman as an independent label in 1995, and was acquired by UMG in 2000. Republic was initially an imprint of the Universal/Motown R ...
,
Verve Label Group Verve Records, also known as Verve Label Group, founded in 1956 by Norman Granz, is home to the world's largest jazz catalogue and includes recordings by artists such as Ella Fitzgerald, Nina Simone, Stan Getz, Bill Evans, Billie Holiday and Osc ...
, and
Spinefarm Records Spinefarm Records is a Finnish record label focusing mainly on heavy metal artists. History In 1999, a sub-label titled Spikefarm Records was started by Sami Tenetz from Thy Serpent. Since 2002, Spinefarm has been part of Universal Music Group, bu ...
are headquartered.


Madrid

Universal Music Spain is based in
Madrid Madrid (, ) is the capital and most-populous city of Spain. The city has almost 3.4 million inhabitants and a metropolitan area population of approximately 6.7 million. It is the second-largest city in the European Union (EU), surpass ...
, Spain.


London

Universal Music Group Global (formerly known as ''Universal Music Group International (UMGI)'') operates offices in London.


Berlin

Universal Music GmbH, the German subsidiary, is headquartered in
Berlin Berlin (; ) is the capital and largest city of Germany by both area and population. Its 3,769,495 inhabitants, as of 31 December 2019 makes it the most-populous city of the European Union, according to population within city limits. One of Ger ...
. It moved in 2002 from Hamburg to the district
Friedrichshain Friedrichshain () is a locality of the borough of Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg in Berlin, Germany. From its creation in 1920 until 2001, it was a freestanding city borough. Formerly part of East Berlin, it is adjacent to Mitte, Prenzlauer Berg, Kreuzb ...
at the river
Spree The Spree (; wen, Sprjewja, cs, Spréva) is, with a length of approximately , the main tributary of the River Havel, and at their confluence in Berlin-Spandau, is much longer than the Havel, which itself flows into the Elbe at Havelberg. The river ...
.


Warsaw

Universal Music Group's
Universal Music Polska Universal Music Polska Sp. z o.o. (Universal Music Poland), is a Polish subsidiary of Universal Music Group, it was founded in 1998 in Warsaw. Labels CEO is Maciej Kutak after Jan Kubicki's departure. Label was founded after PolyGram, within its Po ...
is located in Warsaw.


Toronto

Universal Music Group's Universal Music Canada is located in Toronto.


Other locations

UMG operates in more than 60 territories around the world including Australia, Brazil, France, India, Greater China, Japan, New Zealand, Russia, South Africa, and South Korea. Universal Music Group's parent company,
Vivendi Vivendi SE is a French media conglomerate headquartered in Paris. Widely known as the owner of Universal Music Group, Groupe Canal+, Havas, Editis, Vivendi Village and Dailymotion, the company has activities in music, television, film, book publ ...
, is headquartered in Paris, France.


Legal issues


CD price fixing

In 2000, music companies including UMG entered into consent agreements with the
Federal Trade Commission The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is an independent agency of the United States government whose principal mission is the enforcement of civil (non-criminal) U.S. antitrust law and the promotion of consumer protection. The Commission is headed ...
, with no admission of liability, whereby they agreed to discontinue the use of Minimum advertised price, Minimum Advertised Price programs under which subsidized cooperative advertising was provided to retailers that agreed to adhere to minimum advertised pricing. In 2002, a similar settlement was entered into with music publishers and distributors
Sony Music Sony Music Entertainment (commonly referred to as Sony Music) is an American global music company. Owned by the Japanese conglomerate Sony Group Corporation, it is part of the Sony Music Group, which is owned by Sony Corporation of America. It w ...
, Warner Music Group, Warner Music, Bertelsmann Music Group, EMI, EMI Music and Universal Music Group and certain retailers, without admission of liability or wrongdoing, with various states. In settlement of the claim, the companies collectively agreed to pay a $67.4 million fine and distribute $75.7 million in Compact disc, CDs to public and non-profit groups. It was estimated that consumers were overcharged by $500 million and up to $5 per album.


Payola

In May 2006, an investigation led by then New York Attorney General, Eliot Spitzer, concluded with a determination that Universal Music Group bribery, bribed radio stations to play songs from Ashlee Simpson, Brian McKnight, Big Tymers, Nick Lachey, Lindsay Lohan and other performers under Universal labels. The company paid $12 million to the state in settlement.


YouTube

In 2007, with the help of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, Stephanie Lenz sued UMG's publishing company for allegedly improperly requesting that, pursuant to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, YouTube remove a 29-second home video in which Lenz's child danced to a recording of Prince (musician), Prince's song "Let's Go Crazy". After years of litigation, the suit settled in 2018, prior to the court holding a trial on whether UMG had a subjective belief that the video was infringing and not fair to use before sending its request to YouTube. In April 2016, UMG had the audio muted of a video clip showing Katherine Jenkins singing the British national anthem. They claimed that the recording of "God Save the Queen" was copyrighted, and YouTube initially complied with this request, but subsequently offered the video with the original audio track.


Imeem

In December 2007, UMG announced a deal with Imeem which allows users of the social network to listen to any track from Universal's catalogue for free with a portion of the advertising generated by the music being shared with the record label. All traffic was redirected to Myspace, MySpace after that company acquired Imeem on December 8, 2009.


Universal archive fire (2008)

According to Jody Rosen of ''The New York Times'', the fire which swept through Universal Studios Hollywood on June 1, 2008 caused "the biggest disaster in the history of the music business". In space rented from NBC-Universal, according to an official document marked "Confidential", the fire destroyed at least 118,230 "assets" (master recordings), or about 500,000 song titles, owned by UMG. "The vault housed tape masters for Decca Records, Decca, the pop, jazz and classical powerhouse; it housed master tapes for the storied blues label Chess Records, Chess; it housed masters for Impulse! Records, Impulse!, the groundbreaking jazz label. The vault held masters for the MCA, ABC, A&M, Geffen and Interscope labels; as well as some smaller subsidiary labels. Nearly all of these masters—in some cases, the complete discographies of entire record labels—were wiped out in the fire." In a statement issued on June 11, 2019, UMG said ''The New York Times'' article contained "numerous inaccuracies, misleading statements, contradictions and fundamental misunderstandings of the scope of the incident and affected assets." Following the publication of the ''New York Times'' story, Questlove of The Roots confirmed that the master tapes for two of the band's albums, including unused material and multi-track recordings, were lost in the fire. Similarly, Nirvana (band), Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic said he believed the masters for the band's 1991 album ''Nevermind'' were "gone forever" as a result of the fire. Representatives for R.E.M. announced they would investigate the effects the fire may have had on the band's archival materials, while Hole (band), Hole, Steely Dan, Rosanne Cash and Geoff Downes made statements on their possible losses from the fire. A representative for Eminem confirmed that the rapper's master recordings were digitized months before the fire, but could not confirm whether the physical master reels of his recordings were affected. UMG archivist Patrick Kraus assured that the Impulse! Records, John Coltrane, Muddy Waters, Ahmad Jamal, Nashboro Records, and Chess Records masters survived the fire and were still in Universal's archive. Howard King filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles on June 21, 2019, on behalf of Soundgarden, Hole (band), Hole, Steve Earle, the estate of Tupac Shakur and a former wife of Tom Petty that seeks class action status for artists whose master recordings were believed to have been destroyed in the Universal Studios fire.


Megaupload

On December 9, 2011, Megaupload published a music video titled: "The Mega Song", showing artists including Kanye West, Snoop Dogg, Alicia Keys and will.i.am endorsing the company. The music video was also uploaded to YouTube, but was removed following a takedown request by UMG. Megaupload said that the video contained no infringing content, commenting: "we have signed agreements with every featured artist for this campaign". Megaupload requested an apology from UMG, and filed a lawsuit against the company in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, on December 12, 2011.Megaupload threatens to sue Universal over YouTube video
''The Guardian'' (London), December 13, 2011. Retrieved December 13, 2011.
Megaupload to Sue Universal, Joins Fight Against SOPA
December 12, 2011. Retrieved December 13, 2011.
UMG denied that the takedown was ordered under the terms of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, and said that the takedown was "pursuant to the UMG-YouTube agreement," which gives UMG "the right to block or remove user-posted videos through YouTube's CMS (Content Management System) based on a number of contractually specified criteria."UMG claims "right to block or remove" YouTube videos it doesn't own
Ars Technica, December 16, 2011. Retrieved December 16, 2011.
The video was subsequently returned to YouTube, with the reasons for the UMG takedown remaining unclear.File-Sharing Company Sues Record Label, for a Change
New York Times, December 13, 2011. Retrieved December 16, 2011.
Lawyers for will.i.am initially claimed that he had never agreed to the project, and on December 12, he denied any involvement in the takedown notice.UMG, MegaUpload Case Gets Even Stranger; Will.i.am Says He Didn't Authorize A Takedown
Techdirt. December 15, 2011. Retrieved December 17, 2011.
Megaupload dismissed its case against UMG in January 2012.


Copyright termination lawsuit

On February 5, 2019, John Waite and Joe Ely filed a class-action lawsuit against UMG claiming the company is violating their right to terminate grants of copyright after 35 years in accordance with copyright law of the United States by ignoring Notices of Termination. On May 3, 2019, UMG filed a motion to dismiss the case, stating the Notices of Termination were not valid because the songs were not grants of copyright but work for hire, works for hire.


See also

* List of record labels * List of RIAA member labels * List of Universal Music Group artists


References


External links

* *
UMG History page
* {{Authority control Universal Music Group, Record label distributors Entertainment companies based in California Companies based in Santa Monica, California Entertainment companies established in 1934 1934 establishments in California IFPI members Recording Industry Association of America Vivendi subsidiaries Tencent American companies established in 1934