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"I'm confident that under his leadership, a new and reinvigorated Capitol will provide the kind of environment needed for artists to develop, resulting in more opportunity than ever before."
—-Lucian Grainge on Barnett

BARNETT NEWEST
POWER AT TOWER

Veteran Exec First Building Block in UMG's Post-Merger Plan

It's finally official. In a move which underscores its commitment to expanding the marketplace for new music, Universal Music Group has begun the revitalization of EMI Recorded Music with the appointment of Steve Barnett to Chairman/CEO of its Capitol Music Group. The long-anticipated announcement was made today by UMG Chairman/CEO Lucian Grainge, to whom Barnett reports.

 

Based in Los Angeles at the iconic Capitol Records Tower, Barnett will be responsible for the overall management of the company, which includes Capitol Records, Virgin Records, Blue Note, Astralwerks, Harvest, Capitol Christian Music Group, Caroline and the Capitol Studios.

 

The Capitol Music Group features such artists as Katy PerryThirty Seconds to Mars, the Beatles,  Norah Jones, Aaron Neville, Alice in Chains, A Fine Frenzy, Ryan AdamsAmos Lee, the Decemberists, Rosanne Cash, Anita Baker, Van Morrison, Bob Seger, the Beach Boys and Emeli Sandé, among many others.

 

Commented Grainge: "As we begin to invest in and revitalize EMI globally, the Capitol Music Group, including Virgin, will play a central role in our creative and commercial initiatives. And there is no one better to spearhead this than Steve. His entrepreneurial approach and intuitive ability to build, strengthen and transform artists into powerful global brands has resulted in remarkable success.  I'm confident that under his leadership, a new and reinvigorated Capitol will provide the kind of environment needed for artists to develop, resulting in more opportunity than ever before." 

Added Barnett: "Throughout my career in music, I've always been keenly aware of EMI's impact on the world's culture, so I could not be more excited and grateful for the opportunity Lucian has given me to build the Capitol Music Group into an exceptional record company. I greatly appreciate his confidence in me, and I will work tirelessly to create a welcoming and supportive home for great artists while carefully tending the hugely important catalogue that defines the Capitol legacy.  

 

"It was not an easy decision to leave such a successful company as Columbia, with its incredibly talented artists and the team of people who work so hard on their behalf. However, I know that the label is in great hands and I wish them all the best in the future as I move on to my new company home."

 

The appointment of Barnett is among the first of many steps that will be taken by UMG to expand EMI's creative ranks, reinvest in new talent, enhance innovation and create more diversity and choice for consumers.

 

Barnett was previously Co-Chairman/COO of Columbia Records. The company's market share rose consistently throughout his tenure, resulting in a 50% increase in current market share (27% overall) between 2009 and 2012.

 

While at Columbia as Co-Chairman/COO, Barnett presided over highly successful campaigns for artists including Adele, Beyoncé, John Mayer, Jack White, the Shins, One Direction, Maxwell, Foster the People, J. Cole and Britain's Got Talent superstar Susan Boyle.

 

Barnett first joined Sony Music's Epic Records in 1996 as SVP International, rising to SVP Worldwide Marketing for the label in 1997.  He served as EVP/GM for four years after that, rising to label President in 2004. He was appointed Co-Chairman and COO of Columbia in 2005.

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