SANTA MONICA, California, February 18, 2021 / PRNewswire / –Universal Music Group (UMG), the world’s leading music entertainment company, today announced the launch of Virgin Music Label & Artist Services, a new global network offering premium and flexible artist and label services to the industry’s most dynamic entrepreneurs and independent talent around the world, inspired and influenced by the spirit and philosophy of iconic label Virgin Records.
Mr. Lucian Grainge, Chairman and CEO of UMG, said: “Virgin has long been a name synonymous with disruptive innovation, musical creativity and entrepreneurship. We are excited to announce the revitalization of this iconic music brand as a new model of global distribution and label services combining UMG. unparalleled regional management teams with dedicated resources and world-class services and technologies, to help foster long-term partnerships and ensure the global success of the next generation of independent labels and talented artists. All in all, this global launch represents an important evolution of our cutting edge strategy to be an accelerator and an essential partner for the best artists and independent entrepreneurs in music. “
Mr. Richard Branson, Virgin Founder, said: “I am proud that half a century after opening our first independent record store in London, the name Virgin Music continues to represent the best entrepreneurs, innovators and artists in the music world today. “
Founded in 1972 in the UK by Branson, Virgin Records has helped redefine music culture for nearly half a century. Independent music distribution and disruption have been a key catalyst for Virgin’s global success throughout its history: from its pioneering roots in prog, reggae, punk and new wave; with labels distributed, including Frontline, Stiff, Charisma and Circa; the creation of Caroline and Astralwerks, two now successful divisions within the UMG family of labels.
Virgin Records has also hosted some of the most influential and reverent artists of the past century, including: David Bowie; The Sex Pistols; Aaliyah; The rolling stones; George michael; Janet Jackson; Lenny kravitz; Culture club; Massive attack; and the Spice Girls.
Building on its rich cultural and musical heritage, Virgin Music Label & Artist Services will be led in each region by highly skilled management teams, providing fully-resourced regional centers that combine cutting-edge technology platforms. UMG, specialist local networks and UMG’s global expertise in strength and reach, as well as a suite of resources to help position labels and artists for long-term success globally and to enable the next generation of independent artists and labels to reach new audiences around the world.
Effective immediately, Virgin Music Label & Artist Services will provide global solutions for artists, with fully equipped operations already established in the five major global music markets (US, Japan, UNITED KINGDOM, Germany, France) and through Latin America, the fastest growing region in the world for five years. Additional operations will be launched in the coming months. Regional details include:
In the United States, Caroline will be renamed Virgin Label & Artist Services. He will continue under the leadership of Jacqueline Saturn, who becomes President, Virgin Music Label & Artist Services, reporting to the President and COO of Capitol Music Group, Michelle jubelirerThe company offers independent artists and labels UMG resources, in addition to a winning team of strategists and marketers, resulting in extremely successful partnerships such as: Motown’s innovative alliance with Atlanta-basedMusic quality control, leading to the rise of global superstar such asLil baby;10K Projectswhose disruptive artists includeTrippie Redd, Internet Money, Surfacesandiann diorOther successful partnerships with artists and labels include Clairo through the Fader label, SHAED by Finishing the photo, Black pumas by ATO records. NCT127 and SuperM by SM entertainment and independent artists E-40, Mac Demarco, Anson seabra, Judah and the Lion and others.
In the United Kingdom, a highly respected industrial framework Vanessa Higgins has been appointed MD, Virgin Music Label & Artist Services UK, with immediate effect. She joined UMG from Regent Street Records, the independent label and music publishing company she founded in 2014, after spending 15 years as a touring musician. Higgins has a long history of working with independent artists, having also represented their interests as a member of the board of directors of BPI (the professional association of UK record companies) since 2015, and as director of the innovation center of BPI between 2016-19. She is currently serving as a mentor for Abbey Road Red’s Technology and Innovation Seedling Program. Higgins will report to David Joseph, Chairman and CEO, Universal Music UK. The labels and artists that will be distributed from the UK will include: Mixtape Madness, Nominated for the Brit Awards D Block Europe, Midas The Jagaban, Digga D, Potter Payper & Bugzy Malone, Fiction, Billie Marten, The amazons and The big moon, Rema, StayFleeGetLizzy, Tiffany Calver, EGA, faceless and NQ.
In France, the new advanced division will be built on the foundations of Caroline France, with operations led by Thomas Lorain who has been appointed MD, Virgin Music Labels & Artist Services France with immediate effect. Lorain supervised Caroline France since 2014 and currently manages a team of sixteen people. With the contribution and support of the CEO of Universal Music France, Olivier Nusse since 2016, Caroline France quickly became a leading hotbed for the incubation of new independent artists and labels in France, providing groundbreaking national success for artists in particular; Alpha when (Don Dada Records), Carpenter Brut (No Quarter), Grand Corps Malade (Anouche Productions), Kaaris (OG Record / Lutce), Polo & Pan (Hamburger Records / Ekleroshock), RimK (Frenesik) and Wejdene (Guette Music / Caroline France). In addition to the artists already distributed, the first labels to join VirginMusic France will include: Danger Productions (Captaine Roshi), Guette Music (Larse) Profile de face (Lewis OfMan, Pretty Boy Aaron) and Think of Zik! (Imany, Anwar).
In Germany alongside other markets across central Europe, Caroline’s existing operations will be integrated and extended to Virgin Music Label & Artist services. The new division in Germany will be led by Tina Adams, who will assume the role of Label Manager with immediate effect. The label will be based on Berlin and will report to Frank Briegmann, Chairman and CEO of Universal Music Central Europe and Deutsche Grammophon. The new division will operate alongside the national frontline label VirginRecords Germany.
In Latin America & Iberia, Virgin Music Label & Artist Services will launch in early 2021 in a handful of key markets, including Mexico, Spain and Latin operations in the United States The label will have dedicated teams and resources based Angels, Miami and Mexico and will focus on supporting the next wave of independent Latin talent, labels, influencers and entrepreneurs globally. Virgin Music Label & Artist Services Latin America will be the world’s first fully integrated label services division for Latin music, providing artists, labels and partners with access to local and international marketing, live and management services via GTS, merchandising via Bravado and publishing services alongside UMPG. This unique suite of services will enable Latin artists to take a tailored and cohesive approach to delivering music, visual content, podcasts, physical products and merchandise to provide the best experiences for fans.
Virgin Music Latin America will be led by Vctor Gonzlez, who has been appointed President, Virgin Music LATAM & Iberia, with immediate effect. A longtime and well-respected executive, Gonzlez worked for UMG for over 22 years and most recently served as President of Universal Music Latin Entertainment (UMLE). It will be based at Angels and will report to Jess Lpez, President and CEO of Latin America and the Iberian Peninsula.
In Japan, Virgin Music Label & Artist Services Japan will, with immediate effect, launch and expand Caroline Japan’s existing capabilities, which will be combined into the new division led by a highly experienced executive Hirokazu Tanaka, reporting to Naoshi Fujikura, President and CEO, Universal Music Japan. The new division will operate alongside the national label Virgin Music.
UK-based Caroline International’s award-winning label services operation to be renamed Virgin Music Label & Artist Services, effective immediately, under the continued leadership of MD’s Michael roe and Jim Chancellor, and will support Virgin executives around the world to ensure that Virgin Music Label & Artist Services continues to represent and distribute the best talent and independent labels around the world. In 2020 Caroline International achieved major international success for Caroline artists including: Aitch, the big moon; Internet money; Zoe wees (Via UM Germany) and D-Block Europe among others. Artists and labels that will be distributed worldwide through the Virgin Music Label & Artist services include: Because the music (Christine and the queens, Major Lazer world markets outside France), Van Morrison, Steven wilson, Sophie is hungry, Peter Gabriel, Taming Impala (excluding UK, US and Australia), Iggy Pop, Underworld and DAVE (excluding United Kingdom and United States).
Notes to Editors:
About Universal Music Group
Universal Music Group (UMG) is the global leader in music entertainment, with a wide range of companies active in recorded music, music publishing, merchandising and audiovisual content in more than 60 countries. Featuring the most comprehensive catalog of recordings and songs in all musical genres, UMG identifies and develops artists and produces and distributes the world’s most critically acclaimed and commercially successful music. Committed to art, innovation and entrepreneurship, UMG fosters the development of services, platforms and business models in order to expand artistic and business opportunities for our artists and to create new experiences for fans. Universal Music Group is a Vivendi company. To know more: http://www.universalmusic.com.
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