UMG Secures Stake in Chord Music; Atlantic Records Ups Erica Bellarosa

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Universal Music Group has acquired a 25.8% interest in Chord Music Partners — whose portfolio includes music from the Weeknd, Ellie Goulding, John Legend, Kid Cudi and more — for $240 million.

Chord, which was formed in 2021 by KKR and Dundee Partners, will work with UMG and Dundee as part of a long-term partnership where UMG will handle distribution and publishing administration for Chord’s existing catalog through Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG) and UMG’s Virgin Music Group (VMG).

“Finding partners who share our passion for identifying iconic songs and recordings that will stand the test of time and deliver long-term growth is essential, which is why we’re so pleased to be working with Stephen and Sam Hendel and Dundee Partners,” said Sir Lucian Grainge, chairman and CEO of UMG, in a statement. “With the leadership of Jody Gerson at UMPG, Nat Pastor and JT Myers at Virgin, and the support of our experienced creative executives around the world, no one can do more with music rights than our teams. We look forward to creating maximum commercial and creative value for the songwriters and artists in Chordand building for the future.”

As part of the deal, KKR will sell its majority stake in Chord to Dundee, increasing Dundee’s share to 74.2% with UMG holding the remaining minority stake.

+ Music attorney Erica Bellarosa has been promoted to head of business affairs and general counsel for Atlantic Records.

Bellarosa, a 19-year veteran of Atlantic, is set to lead the label’s business and legal affairs and contract administration departments. Bellarosa started her career at Atlantic Records in 2005 as associate director of business and legal affairs, rising through the ranks to her most recent post as executive vice president of business and legal affairs.

Based in Atlantic’s New York headquarters, Bellarosa reports to Atlantic’s chairmen and CEOs, Julie Greenwald and Craig Kallman.

Pictured above: Erica Bellarosa (Courtesy of Atlantic Records).

+ International advocacy organization Global Citizen has announced the first international edition of its Global Citizen NOW conference in Melbourne, Australia.

Set for March 4, the event will bring together more than 300 young leaders with world leaders, including World Bank President Ajay Banga and former United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Celebrities, including Global Citizen ambassadors Hugh Jackman and Charlie Puth, as well as rock band Crowded House, will also make appearances.

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