After a 14-year tenure at Sony Music Entertainment, Tommy Mottola will leave the
company to launch a new venture, which promises to break new ground, serving as a
music label, as well as developing innovative and unique branding opportunities.
Mottola is resigning his positions as chairman and CEO of Sony Music Entertainment
effective immediately to launch the new venture, which is as yet unnamed, and is
expected to be formed in partnership with Sony Music Entertainment. Prior to his announcement, Mottola was negotiating a new contract with Sony.
"I have been thinking about taking up this new challenge for about a year, and really
made the decision to go forward only recently," Mottola said. "I am thrilled that I will
continue my long-standing relationship with Sony to create a company that I believe
will become a blueprint for the music business in the coming years."
Sony Corporation of America agreed to release Mottola from the two years he has
remaining under his current contract, and said it expects to name a successor within
the next few days.
"Tommy Mottola has led Sony Music for 14 remarkable years. In that time he has
emerged as an icon of the music industry," said Howard Stringer, chairman and CEO,
Sony Corporation of America. "His contributions to our business, his eye for talent
and indeed his relationships with the entire artistic community are matchless. We
respect his decision to return to his musical roots at such a pivotal time in music
history, and expect that he will be enormously successful. He leaves behind a
significant roster of talent, an exceptional management team and a legacy to be
envied. We are deeply grateful for his contributions to Sony. I know everyone looks
forward to his success and to continuing our relationship with him going forward."
Mottola said that the structure of the new venture is designed to meet the array of
opportunities within the changing landscape of the music business.
"Tommy Mottola has been a close colleague and a dedicated member of the Sony
senior management team for many years," said Nobuyuki Idei, chairman and CEO Sony Corporation. "With all of the changes in the music
industry, Tommy felt it was important to him that he return to his great passion for
label and artist development. We deeply appreciate all that he has done to extend
Sony's presence around the world, and we look forward to working with him in the
Mottola is widely recognized as one of the leading visionaries in the music
and entertainment business. He was named chairman and chief executive of Sony
Music Entertainment in 1998. He has developed and expanded Sony Music
Entertainment worldwide business in over 60 countries. Most recently he realized a
number of important strategic co-branding initiatives, including Celine Dion's
marketing partnership with Chrysler, a multifaceted global marketing campaign with
Pepsi and recently signed rock superstars AC/DC to Epic Records, a deal which
included the rights to the group's entire catalog.
Mottola served as president and chief operating officer of Sony Music
Entertainment, a position he took up in 1993. He joined CBS records in 1988 at age
37 as president of CBS Records and a year later was named president of Sony
Music. Prior to joining CBS, Mottola had a very successful career as a manager for
artists such as Hall & Oates, Carly Simon and John Mellencamp.