Jon Platt will be stepping down as Chairman & CEO of Warner/Chappell Music Publishing by the end of this year, according to internal memos obtained by Variety and Billboard. Unconfirmed reports suggest that Platt may be taking the top job at Sony/ATV, which is run by Martin Bandier — Platt’s former boss at EMI.
News of Platt’s impending departure was delivered in a staff memo from Warner Music Group CEO Steve Cooper, which read, in part, “As some of you have heard from Jon Platt, he will be leaving Warner/Chappell before the end of this calendar year. An announcement will be made in due course about where he’s headed.”
Cooper continued, “Warner/Chappell is a very different company than the one [Platt] joined in 2012, and he leaves it well positioned for continued growth and change.” He added, “While we identify a new CEO, Jon will work with COO Carianne Marshall and the senior management team to ensure a smooth transition. With the Warner/Chappell U.S. team’s upcoming move to our new L.A. HQ, we have a great opportunity to build on our strong momentum.”
Platt commented, “WMG is an amazing company. I’ve grown so much in my time here, not only as a music executive, but as a leader. I’ll be forever grateful to Steve Cooper and [Warner Music owner] Len Blavatnik for their belief in me, and for their support. Most importantly, I want to thank you — all of you around the world — I am humbled by the support and trust you’ve so generously given me.”
In other news, Platt is slated to receive City of Hope’s prestigious Spirit of Life ® award during a star-studded gala on October 11. The award will be presented to Platt by his longtime friend, Jay-Z.
In a related story:
Martin Bandier, Chairman and CEO of Sony/ATV Music Publishing since April 2007, confirmed reports that he will be stepping down from his post at the end of March 2019. The text of his letter to the staff, obtained by Variety, reads, in part, “I want to let you know that I am planning to leave Sony/ATV at the end of my contract in March of next year, after what will have been 12 incredible years with the company. I can say without hesitation that my time here has been the absolute highlight of my career, and I am extremely proud of everything that we have achieved together.”
He continued, “On this journey, we have grown from being ranked the world’s fourth biggest music publisher to becoming the clear No. 1. As I have always said, being and staying No. 1 is not a beauty contest, and we have grown into this position by being the best across the board — creatively, administratively and financially. This was underpinned by our most recent financial year, which was our best ever.”
Bandier added, “It is also important to note that, while we have been successful in growing our business and maintaining our position as the largest music publisher in the world, we have never lost sight of the fact that our priority is to fight tirelessly on behalf of our songwriters and to ensure that they are fully compensated for their work, both by streaming companies and other music services that use their songs. Rankings matter, but our songwriters and their music matter the most. I think we have made great progress in that regard, and I will continue that fight for songwriters after I leave Sony/ATV.”
• The news of Bandier’s 2019 departure seems to dovetail with the other recent news that Jon Platt is stepping down as Chairman & CEO of Warner/Chappell Music by the end of the year. Unconfirmed reports have suggested that Platt is crossing the street to Sony/ATV as the heir-apparent to Bandier, his former boss at EMI.
Courtesy RAMP.