BMG’s revenues grew by 7.5% in 2018, hitting €545million ($644million). According to the Bertelsmann-owned firm, the results were driven by organic growth over the previous year’s €507 million.
The label announced solid earnings for 2018 which is in its tenth year since the “new” BMG opened for business after its previous incarnation merged with Sony Music.
BMG said that it benefited in particular from the expansion of its recordings business, which grew strongly during 2018.
The EBITDA margin rose to 22.5% (previous year: 20.5%).
“2018 was a successful business year for Bertelsmann,” Chairman/CEO Thomas Rabe said. “We became a faster-growing, more digital, and more International Group. Organic growth is higher than it has been for years, and nearly half of our revenues came from digital activities. Both of these factors demonstrate how far we have come with the Group’s transformation.”
The success of BMG
In the recordings business, BMG found success with artists including Lil Dicky, Jason Aldean, Kylie Minogue, The Prodigy and Kontra K.
BMG publishing clients are currently in the No. 1 spots on the albums and singles charts in the U.S.
The company signed new deals artists including Keith Richards (whose publishing has been handled by the company since 2013 along with Mick Jagger signed a worldwide contract for his solo recordings), Dido, Marianne Faithfull, Lenny Kravitz, and Adel Tawil. Among the most prominent music publishing signings were Ringo Starr and JuiceWRLD.
The company also acquired the world music label World Circuit Records and the US hip-hop and rap label RBC Records.
In the music publishing business, world tours by artists including Roger Waters and The Rolling Stones contributed to higher collections, as did BMG’s administration of the Fremantle music catalog.
Songwriters contributed to three of the five biggest summer hits on US radio.
The publishing business also continued to grow, with chart success from songwriters including Jason Evigan, George Ezra, Camille Purcell, Bebe Rexha, Jessie Reyez, Jess Glynne, and The BossHoss.
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