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SONY ENDS FISCAL '19
ON A HIGH NOTE

Sony Music posted yet another impressive fiscal year, as streaming grew 24% to $2.49b in fiscal 2019 and the company brought in $7.56b in the year ended 3/31, with operating profit hitting 14%.

Recorded music in Rob Stringer’s division was up 12% for the 12-month period, as it closed with a strong quarter that had yet to feel the full effect of the coronavirus lockdowns. Recorded music was up 13.5% in the quarter to $1.07b, with streaming up 27% to $641.7m. Publishing revenue was up 15% to $367.6m. Operating income for the quarter, $278.3m, was up 39% over Q4 in 2018.

Streaming now represents 60% of Sony Music's revenue.

In Sony’s organizational structure, the music unit is saddled with a Japanese videogame unit, Visual Media and Platform, that dragged down overall results for Sony Music. Minus Visual Media and Platform, music and publishing brought $5.63b into Sony’s coffers in fiscal 2019, a 12% spike over fiscal 2018.

The company warned that at the end of the quarter, COVID-19 was starting to have an impact in music, especially in countries with strong physical sales.

Sony Corp stated, "The impact on profitability from the delays in new music is limited at this time in the U.S. and other countries where the proportion of music that is streamed is high. But in countries like Japan and Germany, where the proportion of music that is streamed is relatively low, CDs and other packaged media sales are decreasing due to restrictions on going outside."

For the quarter, the company singled out Harry StylesFine Line, Ozzy Osbourne’s Ordinary Man, Luke CombsWhat You See Is What You Get and various tracks by Future, Doja Cat and Jackboys among the biggest sellers.

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