LOS ANGELES (Hypebot) – Warner Music Group head Edgar Bronfman Jr. told attendees at last week's Web 2.0 Summit that all new artist contracts at WMG will be 360 deals. Silicon Valley blog TechCrunch went on to report that 1/3 of the artists currently signed to the label were already working under this kind of comprehensive arrangement which can involve label control of revenue from publishing, web sites, merchandise, touring and all other aspects of the artist's career.
But many questions about WMG's 360 plans remain unclear. Is the 1/3 of the roster claim accurate? It seems high for a concept that is at most two years old. And what exactly does a WMG 360 deal mean? From an artist and manager's perspective, what value is WMG adding that warrants the additional contractual restraints; or has an era of falling sales revenue simply made the 360 deal necessity?
Most intriguing is how the new Ticketmaster Entertainment figures into WMG's 360 plan. The label group was heavily invested in the now merged Front Line and has 2 seats on the combined venture's board. New CEO and mega-manager Irving Azoff has promised much more than just tickets from the new Ticketmaster. How does WMG fit into that plan and what does Bronfman hope to get for his company from the investment?