Universal Music UK Revenues Jump 9% In 2017

David Joseph, Universal Music UK and Ireland chairman/CEO
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David Joseph, Universal Music UK and Ireland chairman/CEO
  • Save
David Joseph, Universal Music UK and Ireland chairman/CEO

Universal Music UK reported 2017 revenues of $458.55 million (£344.3 million), a year-on-year increase of 8.8%.

The gross profit of Universal Music Operations Ltd stood at $142.33 million (£106.9 million) for the year, up 12.3 percent on 2016.  After distribution costs and administrative expenses, the firm’s annual operating profit hit £10.6 million in 2017, which is a huge jump (+999%) on the $1.28 million (£964,000) operating profit posted in the year before.

Universal Music Group increased revenues by 10% over the same period.  The streaming boom is prompting parent company Vivendi to very seriously consider an IPO.

According to the UK company’s strategic report, “This growth was driven by increased demand for steaming services, as well as the timing of new releases.” Universal Music UK added that the outlook was “positive” as a result of continued growth in streaming.

Universal Music Operations Ltd generated $251.38 million (£188.8 million) from product sales in 2017, up 11.7% year-on-year. It also generated $207 million (£155.5 million) from royalties, up 5.5% year-on-year.

David Joseph, Universal Music UK and Ireland chairman/CEO, has recently overseen a new strategy for the company’s international division.

The majority (70.3%) of the label’s revenues in 2017 were derived in the UK ($322.34 million [£242.1 million]), with 11.8% coming in the USA ($54.19 million [£40.7 million]).

The financial statement for 2017 revealed that Universal spent a total of $20.9 million (£15.7 million) for controlling stakes in companies including dance label All Around The World, Strange Music (now RG2016), Stiff Records and ZTT.  The company owns a 50% share in Rick Rubin’s Def American ltd, better known as American Recordings.

$3.3 million (£2.48 million) of this money was deferred and is due to be paid in three equal installments over the next three years.

On December 31st, 2017, the company had contractual commitments  for artist advances of $46,419,860.14 (£34,864,324) (2016 — $46,998,606.46 [£35,299,000]), of which $12,550,264.27 (£9,426,062) (2016 — $27,076,224.85 [£20,336,000]) relates to the current (FY2018) financial year.

You can view the entire, detailed financial summary here.