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Universal Revenues Dropped 6.7% In 2014

LOS ANGELES (VIP NEWS) — Universal Music Group`s full-year revenues dipped by 6.7% in 2014, down to €4.56 billion.

Sales in its recorded music division saw a slightly steeper drop of 7.6%, to €3.69bn. At constant currency and perimeter (which excludes the impact of Parlophone Label Group in 2013), UMG’s full-year revenue only fell 3.8%, while its recorded music income declined by 4.4%, which UMG parent Vivendi attributed to "the rapid transformation of the recorded music industry".

Physical music income was down 12.2% (€1.42bn) on a constant currency/constant perimeter basis; digital sales (which includes streaming) were only down €1.64bn). At just constant currency, digital sales were down 2.8%.

In a statement, Vivendi said: "Recorded music digital sales were flat compared to 2013 at constant currency and perimeter, as significant growth in subscription and streaming revenues offset the decline in digital download sales. However, total recorded music revenues declined due to the continued industry decline in physical sales."

Universal Music Publishing Group revenue grew 2.8% (4.2% at constant currency/perimeter) to €673m, while income from sync and public performance royalties was also up 6% to €635m. Merch revenue was down 15% €232m.

UMG had the top three albums of the year in the US: Disney`s Frozen soundtrack, Taylor Swift’s 1989 and Sam Smith’s In The Lonely Hour. Including track and stream equivalent albums, UMG had the top six, adding Ariana Grande`s My Everything, Katy Perry`s Prism and Lorde`s Pure Heroine.

UMG’s EBITA was €565 million, up 11.3% at constant currency (+10.7% at actual currency) compared to 2013 (up 20.2% excluding Parlophone Label Group). Vivendi said: "The favorable performance reflected the benefit of cost management and lower restructuring and integration costs that more than offset the decline in revenues." –According to MusicWeek