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Universal Revenues Slide 6.2%, Digital Up 8.4%

NEW YORK (Hypebot) – Universal Music Group’s (UMG) revenues were €4,363 million in 2009 a 6.2% decrease compared to 2008. Digital sales grew 8.4% tempered by softening demand for mobile products in the United States and Japan. Music publishing revenues increased 1.7% and UMG newly acquired merchandising division grew 24.6%.

The year end report touted UMG's support of "Spotify’s premium service accessible on the iPhone and MusicStation’s launch on the Android platform". but failed to mention Spotify's free ad supported online service or when it would license a US entry. UMG also pointed proudly to its involvement in VEVO.

UMG’s 2009 EBITA of €580 million declined 14.7% at constant currency compared to 2008. Lower gross margins from declining sales were partially offset by cost management initiatives, primarily reductions in marketing and overhead expenses.

Best sellers for the year included new releases from Black Eyed Peas, U2 and Eminem and from Lady Gaga and Taylor Swift. Local best sellers included titles from Japan’s GreeeeN, Dreams Come True and Masaharu Fukuyama, as well as Germany’s Rammstein, and France’s Mylène Farmer.