Universal Music Group has announced that Island Def Jam Motown Music Group will be ceased and will let Island, Def Jam, and Motown Records be stand-alone labels. The move has shaken up a lot of things for UMG as they promote Kyambo “Hip Hop” Joshua and Dion “No I.D.” Wilson as executive vice presidents and co-heads of A&R of Def Jam. As for the CEO position, Def Jam has promoted Steve Bartels, who was previously the COO and president. Also for Island, David Massey will continue to run it, but will add on to his marketing, publicity, and A&R department. For Motown came some changes to as they promoted SVP, Ethiopia Habtemariam, to President. Motown will also be moving their offices to Los Angeles at the Capitol Tower. She will also still be serving as EVP/ Head of Urban Music at Universal Music Publishing Group.
Additionally, with all these changes for the three record labels, Barry Weiss, the chairman and CEO of all UMG’s east coast labels, will now step down “in order to enter into discussions with UMG about a new venture together” as the sources state.
UMG also announced that A&R executive, Karen Kwak, to be the new Executive Vice President A&R, U.S. Recorded Music. In her new role, Karen Kwak will serve all of UMG’s record labels in the United States.
UMG chairman and CEO, Lucian Grainge spoke out and had this to say:
“At the heart of these great companies is the vision and creative instincts of a team of passionate professionals. At UMG, our labels are empowered to be entrepreneurial and take creative risks. By re-establishing Def Jam, Island and Motown as stand-alone labels within the UMG family, we’re positioning them to recapture the uniqueness of their brands and serve artists with the singularity of vision, focus and creativity that was at the core of their original success.”
Thank you Billboard for the update.
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