Sony Music Entertainment has appointed Rob Stringer as its new CEO, with former CEO Doug Morris to assume the role of chairman as of April 2017.
Stringer, who is currently chairman and CEO of Columbia Records, will take over operational responsibility for Sony Music Entertainment when he starts the role in April 2017, reporting directly to Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton.
The appointment means that two of the three majors are now being run by Brits, with Lucian Grainge CEO of Universal Music Group.
Over the last six years as CEO, Doug Morris has increased Sony Music’s market share and profitability, bolstering the company through partnerships with Ultra, Astronauts Wanted, and Disruptor Records. He also extended the company’s joint venture deal with Syco Entertainment in 2015, while playing a key role in Sony Music acquiring 100% of The Orchard.
“I want to thank Doug for his dedication and continued commitment to Sony Music,” Lynton said. “He has been an innovative force in the music business for over five decades and I look forward to working with him in this next phase of his outstanding career. In his new advisory role he will report directly to me. Since 2011, he has expertly led Sony Music through some of the most transformative and challenging issues facing the music industry, while each year increasing the company’s market share and profitability. His passion for music, devotion to artists and tireless energy has made Sony Music the industry leader it is today.”
Meanwhile, Stringer has spearheaded Columbia’s development into becoming the industry’s leading label by market share, with a roster including Adele, Beyoncé, AC/DC, Bruce Springsteen, Barbara Streisand, Bob Dylan, Calvin Harris, David Bowie, Daft Punk, Dixie Chicks, John Legend, John Mayer, One Direction and Tony Bennett.
Commenting on Stringer’s appointment, Lynton stated: “Rob Stringer is one of the most skilled and successful executives in the music industry. His efforts and achievements at Columbia have contributed immeasurably to the overall strength of Sony Music worldwide. Not only is he a tremendous developer of talent and nurturer of stars who has overseen numerous massive hits, but also he is an innovator who understands how to grow revenue and market share in the rapidly changing music business. His ability to adapt to meet the needs of artists and fans in a dynamic marketplace that mixes digital audio, visual media and physical goods makes him the perfect fit to head the company moving forward. I am thrilled to have him leading Sony Music’s next chapter.”
Speaking of his new role, Morris said: “I am extremely proud of the great leadership team and organization we have built at Sony Music. Our focus on building and maintaining the best creative centers led by world-class executives has yielded fantastic success over the last six years. Rob is a passionate and competitive executive who understands the importance and value of hits, and like a heat-seeking missile, he locks onto great artists. Most importantly, he is one of the finest people I know. And moving forward, Sony Music Entertainment will be in the great hands of Rob Stringer. I look forward to continue working with Michael, Rob and the rest of the Sony family moving forward.”
Stringer added: “As someone who has spent his entire career at Sony Music, it is a tremendous honor to be named CEO. I would like to thank Kaz Hirai and Michael Lynton for believing in the value and power of music, and for their continuing support of me. I’d also like to extend a special thanks to Doug for both his friendship and mentorship to me personally, as well as for the great leadership and service he has provided to Sony Music. This is a time of enormous opportunity and change for the music business. I am excited to work with the great team we have built at Sony Music to continue to be a champion for artists, and further adapt and grow the business as we meet the challenges ahead.”
Earlier today, Sony/ATV announed the appointment of David Monaco to president, chief marketing officer.