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Universal Music Revenues Jump 21% on Recorded Music Subscriptions, Streaming in 2022

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Universal Music Group’s revenues surged 21.6% to 10.34 billion euros ($10.96 billion) for all of 2022, boosted by strong returns from recorded music subscriptions and streaming.

The world’s biggest music company reported the revenue its recorded music division gets from subscriptions and streaming rose by nearly 19% to over 5.3 billion euros ($5.6 billion), while digital revenues in its music publishing division rose by nearly 50% to over 1 billion euros ($1.05 billion) in 2022, all helping it achieve a nearly 15% uptick in operating profit.

UMG chairman and chief executive Lucian Grainge said the earnings were evidence the company’s diversified revenue streams has made it an example of the music business’ steady strength amid a darkening economic outlook.


“We continue to successfully manage the company for long term growth while driving strong results in our core business — developing great artists and introducing their music to fans around the world,” said Grainge. “Our roster … achieved enormous commercial and creative success in markets around the world. We also worked to evolve and expand relationships with our existing DSP partners as well as establish new ones in fitness, health, gaming and the metaverse, driving the industry forward though leadership, creativity, innovation and collaboration.”

UMG was home to seven of the top 10 albums on the Billboard 200, 15 of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry’s (IFPI) top 20 global artists and four of Spotify’s top five global artists in 2022.

UMG reported adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization rose 19.4% to 2.14 million euros ($2.26 billion) for 2022 from a year ago. Adjusted EBIDTA margin fell by 0.4 percentage points to 20.6%.

The company’s free cash flow increased by a whopping 70.2% to 638 million euros ($675 million) largely from the growth in adjusted EBITDA, according to the company’s filings.

UMG’s Earnings Highlights:

  • Revenue rose 21.6%, or 13.6% in constant currency, to 10.34 billion euros ($10.96 billion) for 2022 from 8.5 billion euros ($9 billion) in 2021
  • EBIDTA rose 20.3%, or 12.5% in constant currency, to 2.03 billion euros ($2.15 billion) in 2022 from 1.69 billion euros ($1.78 billion) in 2021
  • EBITDA margin fell to 19.6% in 2022 from 19.8% in 2021
  • Adjusted EBITDA rose 19.4%, or 11.7% in constant currency, to 2.14 billion euros ($2.26 billion) in 2022 from 1.79 billion euros ($1.93 billion) in 2021
  • Operating profit rose 14.8%, or 7.9% in constant currency, to 1.6 billion euros ($1.69 billion) in 2022 from 1.39 billion euros ($1.48 billion) in 2021
  • Net debt fell 10% to 1.8 billion euros ($1.9 billion) in 2022 from 2 billion euros ($2.1 billion) in 2021
  • Free cash flow rose 70.2% to 1.09 billion euros ($1.15 billion) in 2022 from 638 million euros ($675 million) in 2021

Recorded Music Division Highlights:

  • Recorded music revenue overall rose 16.3%, or 8.8% in constant currency, to 7.9 billion euros in 2022 from 6.8 billion in 2021
  • Subscriptions and streaming revenue rose 18.7%, or 9.8% in constant currency, to 5.3 billion euros in 2022 from 4.5 billion euros in 2021
  • Physical revenues rose 7.7%, or 4.1% in constant currency, to 1.2 billion euros in 2022 from 1.12 billion in 2021
  • License and other revenue rose 19.6%, or 13.4% in constant currency, to 1 billion euros in 2022 from 896 million in 2021
  • Downloads and other digital revenue rose 4%, or fell 2.9% in constant currency, to 337 million euros in 2022 compared to 324 million in 2021

Music Publishing Highlights:

  • Music publishing revenues overall rose 34.8%, 26.3% in constant currency, to 1.8 billion euros in 2022 from 1.3 billion euros in 2021
  • Performance revenues rose 24.9%, or 18.2% in constant currency, to 371 million euros in 2022 from 297 million euros in 2021
  • Synchronization revenues rose 18.6%, or 10.3% in constant currency, to 236 million euros in 2022 from 199 million euros in 2021
  • Digital revenues rose 49%, or 38.7% in constant currency, to 1.04 billion euros in 2022 from 698 million euros in 2021

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