| 21 Jun 2024
Warner Music Group Corp: 41.1 per cent of total revenue attributed to digital revenue

MUMBAI: New York headquartered Warner Music Group Corp., announced the financial result for Q3 ended 30 June 2014. The total revenue for which increased by 16. 9 per cent in constant currency with $788 million for Q3 2014 (unaudited) compared to $633 million Q3 2013. Excluding Parlophone Label Group (PLG), the total revenue increased by 3.5 per cent.

The acquisition of PLG (in July 2013) is strongly reflected in the Q3 2014.

The nine months of the financial year 2013-2014 starting October 2013, witnessed revenue of $2,256 million in the year 2014, which is 7 per cent higher as compared to last year.

The report issued by the label stated that digital revenue grew 26.1 per cent representing 41.1per cent of total revenue, compared to 38.8 per cent in the previous year quarter. Growth in digital revenue reflects the acquisition of PLG as well as strong growth in streaming revenue. Excluding PLG, digital revenue increased 11.7 per cent. The digital revenue went up to $324 million in Q3 2014 from $257 million in Q3 2013.

The net loss for the company was $184 million Q3 2014 compared to $62 million in the previous year quarter and included $141 million of loss recorded on extinguishment of debt. The net loss in revenue of nine months, ending 30 June 2014, was $279 million. The losses before income taxes was $200 million (Q3 2014) compared to $43 million in the same quarter last year.

The company stated that OIBDA declined slightly to $66 million from $69 million in the third quarter last year and OIBDA margin contracted 2 percentage points to 8.4 per cent from 10.4 per cent. The company claims that the decline in OIBDA and OIBDA margin is due to PLG restructuring and integration costs and real estate costs related to moving the company's corporate headquarters.

As of June 30, 2014, the company reported a cash balance of $142 million, long-term debt of $3033 million and net debt (total long-term debt, including the current portion, minus cash) of $2904 million. There was no balance outstanding on the company's revolver as of 30 June 2014.

The revenue for recorded music and music publishing was $656 million and $137 million respectively, for Q3 2014. The digital revenue accounted to $299 and $27 million for recorded music and music publishing segments respectively.

Music publishing revenue grew 2.2 per cent on an as-reported basis and 0.7 per cent in constant-currency. Digital revenue grew 22.7 per cent due to growth in streaming revenue. Digital revenue represented 19.7 per cent of total music publishing revenue, compared to 16.4 per cent in the same quarter of the previous year. Due to continued transition from physical to digital sales, mechanical revenue fell 6.1 per cent in the quarter. Synchronisation revenue was affected due to changes in the licensing space.

Major sellers in recorded music included Coldplay, The Black Keys, Ed Sheeran, Linkin Park, Led Zeppelin, Jason Derulo and Lily Allen.

Warner Music Group CEO Stephen Cooper said, "A stronger release schedule, combined with sustained investment in exceptional artistic talent and first-class execution by our operators, delivered robust results this quarter. We are especially pleased to see our strategic moves pay off, with the acquisition of Parlophone Label Group being a key contributor to this quarter's success. We expect our momentum to continue through the remainder of the fiscal year, due to several exciting artist releases in the coming months."

Warner Music Group EVP and CFO Brian Roberts said, "We are pleased with our financial performance with key highlights including solid revenue growth, improvement in adjusted OIBDA and an increase in our cash balance as compared to the prior-year quarter."