Business News Industry People Labels & Publishers Top Stories

Warner UK boss to head up the major’s global recorded music business

By | Published on Thursday 6 April 2017

Max Lousada

Warner Music has announced that it is promoting the boss of its UK business, so that’ll be Max Lousada, to a new role overseeing the mini-major’s record labels worldwide.

This means that by the end of the year all three of the major record companies will basically be under the command of British music industry executives. Which means that when this whole streaming malarkey goes to shit and the entire record industry collapses in a way that makes 2004 look like the good times, leaving a recorded music business that only exists to soundtrack make-up demonstration videos on YouTube, it will all be our fault. And worse still, Donald Trump’s strict anti-immigrant stance will have been vindicated. These are dangerous times to be alive.

So yes, as of October this year Lousada will become CEO Of Recorded Music for the whole Warner Music Group, which will put him atop all the Warner labels around the world, as well as the firm’s artist and label services divisions WEA and ADA. Though if that sounds like a bit of a cushy job, don’t worry, he’ll continue to head up Warner Music UK too, which means he’ll divide his time between London and Warner’s global HQ in New York.

Lousada will report in to overall Warner Music Group CEO Steve Cooper in his new role, who said yesterday: “With WMG breaking more superstars and leading the industry’s transition to streaming, this is the perfect time to appoint a proven leader to turbocharge the success of our recorded music division. Max’s wide-ranging achievements make him the natural choice”.

Noting that Lousada had “transformed our UK operation” – which presumably doesn’t just mean signing Ed Sheeran, though possibly mainly that – Cooper added: “[Max is] the consummate music man, always exploring what we can do differently to benefit our artists, their fans, our people and our partners. I’m looking forward to working with Max as he leads our outstanding recorded music management team”.

For his part, Lousada added: “I came to Warner because it’s always been such a fantastic melting pot of independent spirits uniting to champion artists that change culture and make music that matters. Fourteen years later, that ethos is as strong as ever, so I’m delighted to have the opportunity to build on those foundations with my extremely gifted partners around the world. Together, we’ll continue to create an environment where talent has the support and the freedom to flourish, where we empower our artists and our people to be true pioneers, and where we inspire audiences to be as excited about music as we are”.

Sounds exciting. While Lousada prepares to take up his new job heading up Warner Music’s labels business worldwide, the two other US headquartered majors are under British charge as well, of course. Universal Music continues to be headed up by your favourite knight of the British Empire Lucian Grainge, and over at Sony Music another Brit, Rob Stringer, is just settling in to the big cheese role as we speak.

So that’s kind of inspirational for all you UK music execs just starting out, isn’t it? You too could rise to the very top and get yourself ideally positioned to spectacularly fuck everything up once and for all. Or to march the recorded music business into a new golden age maybe. Though spectacularly fucking everything up sounds like more fun.