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UMG Down In Q1

PARIS (Hypebot) — A day after a report that overall music sales had increased in the first months of 2011, Universal Music Group announced a drop in both sales and revenue.

According to new financials today from parent Vivendi, UMG revenues fell to $1.25 billion (€881 million), a 5% decrease on a constant currency basis when compared to Q1 2010. Favorable currency rates and growth in merchandising could not make up for a 2.7% decline in recorded music sales. Digital sales increased 17.6% year-on-year.

The company blamed a lack of hit releases and falling demand for physical product for the fall. UMG best sellers included titles from Rihanna and a new EP from Justin Bieber in addition to the latest “Les Enfoirés” release in France.

Universal is pinning its next quarter hopes on potentially popular new titles from Lady Gaga, Kanye West and Mumford & Sons, among others.