BMG’s revenues increased by 12.2% in 2016, up from €371 million in 2015 to €416 million, the company announced this morning.
The rise in revenues was precipitated by the company’s publishing business in the UK, Australia and continental Europe while a strong performance in its growing recorded music business in continental Europe, the US and the UK helped boost revenues from streaming.
Operating EBITDA was up by 13.1% year-on-year to €95 million (previous year: €84 million), while the EBITDA margin increased to 22.8% (previous year: 22.6%).
BMG also made significant strides in expanding its international presence, opening new offices in Brazil and Australia, meaning that it now has operations in countries that account for 75% of the global music market. Following the opening of its Australia office, the firm completed its its acquisition of the music operations of Alberts, one of the country’s leading music companies.
Furthermore, in China, BMG built upon its collaboration with the Alibaba Music Group in a move to make the process access to the country’s digital music platforms easier for international artists.
Publishing signings with artists such as Pink Floyd legend Roger Waters, Pitbull, Jamiroquai and Robin Schulz also drove revenues for the company, as did recording deals with artists including Blink-182, Nickelback, Rick Astley, A Perfect Circle and Max Giesinger.
Meanwhile, the acquisition of a majority stake in the ARC Music publishing catalogue secured the rights to songs by artists including Chuck Berry, the Beach Boys and John Lee Hooker in the UK. It also acquired Blondie’s catalogue and acquired a publishing catalogue from the BBC.
BMG’s financials contributed to a record breaking year for parent company Bertelsmann. The company achieved its biggest revenue increase in four years and hit group profit of €1.14 billion – it’s highest since 2006.
Thomas Rabe, chairman and CEO of Bertelsmann, said: “Bertelsmann has changed considerably in recent years. Our business figures for 2016 make it clear once again that the Group restructuring is paying off – Bertelsmann is more profitable today than it has been in a long time. We have become visibly faster growing, more digital, more international and more diversified, and we will continue this development. To this end, we will invest several billion euros in our high-growth and digital businesses by 2020. Besides Brazil, India and China, the United States is a particular focus in the international expansion of our businesses.”