Universal Music Group

American music corporation
(Redirected from Universal Records)

Universal Music Group is a company that runs four record labels in the music industry. It is the largest business group and family of record labels in the world. It started in 1934 as "Decca Records USA" and had some other names, before it became "Universal Music Group" in 1996. The company is based in Santa Monica, California.[2][3]

Universal Music Group
Subsidiary of Vivendi
IndustryMusic entertainment
Founded1934 (as Decca Records USA)
1990 (MCA Music Entertainment Group formed)
1996 (first UMG incarnation)
1998 (second UMG incarnation)
HeadquartersSanta Monica, California and Broadway, New York, United States United States [1]
Key people
Doug Morris: Chairman and CEO
Lucian Grainge: Chairman and CEO UMG International
RevenueIncrease€4.87 billion (2007)
ParentFlag of France.svg Vivendi
SubsidiariesIsland Def Jam Music Group
The Universal Motown/Universal Republic Group
Capitol Records
Virgin Records
Machete Music
Decca Records
Universal Music Group Nashville
Verve Records
WebsiteUniversal Music

UMG controls 25.5% of the market share. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of French company Vivendi; Universal Studios, the movie studio, was sold in part to NBC, which itself is part of GE. UMG owns the largest music publishing business in the world, Universal Music Publishing Group, following the acquisition of BMG Music Publishing in May 2007. Vivendi's headquarters are in Paris, France. In the United States, UMG is in Santa Monica, California, and New York City, along with Universal Music Group Nashville; in the UK the group has a number of offices in London and Romford.

History of the companyEdit

"Universal Music" was once the music company for the movie studio Universal Pictures. MCA Inc. bought American Decca in 1962. Seagram, the owner of MCA, would buy PolyGram in 1998 to form Universal Music Group (which had been MCA before 1996).

The branches of "UMG" now count Capitol Records, Virgin Records, Interscope Records, A&M Records, Geffen Records, Island Records and Def Jam Recordings.

In 2007, Universal bought BMG's music publishing branch and folded it into the "Universal Music Publishing" division.

In 2012, Universal bought most of EMI's music recordings. After the buyout, Universal then sold some labels such as V2, Sanctuary, Mute, and Parlophone.

Universal Music has announced that it will develop an online site for music videos inspired by Hulu.com, the site setup by News Corp and NBC that allows free streaming of television shows.[4] This website is named Vevo, and its music videos have been watched billions of times on YouTube.


  1. Universal Music Group - Contact
  2. "History". Universal Music Group. Retrieved 2008-07-03.
  3. "Universal Music Group". About.com. Retrieved 2008-07-03.
  4. "Exclaim News: Universal to Create Hulu-like Music Video Site". Archived from the original on 2008-12-01. Retrieved 2013-09-29.

Other websitesEdit