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A JOLLY FISCAL Q3
FOR SONY MUSIC

Adele’s 30 helped drive a solid quarter for Sony Music as recorded-music revenue hit $1.65b during the company’s fiscal third quarter, an increase of 15.2%.

Streaming revenue of $1.075b was up 36% in yen for the three-month period ending 12/31. Publishing was up 15% in the quarter, to $467m.

Besides Columbia’s Adele, top sellers were Doja Cat’s Planet Her, Lil Nas X’s MONTERO and The Kid LAROI’s F*ck Love.

Margins for recorded music and publishing are near 20% for the first nine months of the fiscal year

Sony expects the music division to hit close to $9.8b when its fiscal year ends on 3/31, with an operating income of $1.8b.

In a presentation to analysts, Sony Executive Deputy President and CFO Hiroki Totoki said the company has invested approximately $900m in music catalogs in the fiscal year. Big-ticket items included Bruce Springsteen’s recorded music and music-publishing catalog, Bob Dylan’s recorded-music catalog and a majority stake in Alamo Records.

While recorded music and music publishing were up, the sector’s profits slipped to $496m due to 2020 Q3's benefiting from the smash Japanese movie Demon Slayer: Mugen Train. Sony includes its visual media and platform business in the music category; their exclusion would show the division up 22% in the fiscal year’s first nine months.

Overall, Sony Group’s income hit $27.2b in the quarter, with profits up 20%, or $4.15b, thanks largely to the reopening of movie theaters.

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