Warner Music Group has made its first board appointment since its successful IPO with the election of music biz veteran Ceci Kurzman.
Kurzman – who previously served in senior roles at Arista and Epic, managed Alicia Keys and Shakira and is currently founder/president of Nexus Management Group – joins the board of directors, including the nominating and corporate governance committee, today (October 1).
A statement said that, in line with public company best practices, the board determined that its only management member should be WMG CEO, Steve Cooper. It was also decided that the Board would remain at 11 members. Consequently, Max Lousada, WMG’s global CEO of recorded music, will step aside from the board.
“Ceci’s expertise in developing the careers of artists, combined with her work as an entrepreneur and investor, will make her a great addition to our exceptional group of advisors,” said Sir Leonard Blavatnik, founder & chairman of WMG parent company, Access Industries. “Max is playing an integral role in the current success and future of Warner Music Group, and he’ll continue to be an influential voice in our board discussions.”
“Music already has unprecedented reach and impact across the globe, and every day the opportunities grow more dynamic, disruptive, and ubiquitous,” said Kurzman. “Warner is uniquely positioned in this exciting environment, with an extraordinary roster of artists and songwriters, backed by a forward-thinking leadership team across both recorded music and music publishing. I’m looking forward to working with my new colleagues on the WMG board to help the company innovate and achieve its ambitious vision.”
“I’m happy to welcome Ceci and her valuable perspective to the world of WMG,” said Lousada. “And I look forward to working with her, Len, Steve, and the rest of the board, as we continue to pioneer big, bold opportunities for artists, and accelerate our investments in new talent, territories, and technology.”
Kurzman currently serves on the board of directors, audit committee, and compensation committee of Revlon, as well as on the board of directors for various organisations including Man Group plc and Cirque Du Soleil Entertainment Group. Nexus is now an investment group, working in partnership with established private equity partners.
Kurzman is a passionate advocate of boardroom diversity and her appointment means the Warner board is no longer all white. The company and Blavatnik recently launched a $100m social justice fund in the wake of Black Out Tuesday.
WMG shares are currently trading at around $28, down from its post-IPO peak of $34.76. Its market cap currently exceeds $14.26 billion.