Warner Music Group takes hits in Q2 financial results

Warner Music Group released its financials for its fiscal second quarter. In the period ending March 31, The company posted a net loss of $74 million, reversing the income of $67 million in the year-ago period. It gave a series of reasons for the large turnaround: “operating loss in the quarter, losses on investments compared to a gain in the prior-year quarter and lower other income associated with the gain on the Company’s Euro-denominated debt and intercompany loans due to foreign exchange rates, partially offset by a tax benefit in the quarter due to lower pre-tax income.”

The label also saw a slight dip of 1.7% in revenue, falling from $1.09 billion to $1.07 billion. It credited the decline to a lighter release schedule, disruptions related to COVID-19, foreign exchange rates, and the one-time impact of a digital streaming license from Q2 2019. Despite the overall dip, digital revenue increased 5.7% to $699 million, now holding a 65.3% of the label’s total.

“We had a tough comparison with an especially strong Q2 in 2019, so I’m pleased that we’ve matched our excellent performance in the prior-year quarter, due in large part to an 11% increase in Recorded Music streaming revenue and a 17% increase in Music Publishing digital revenue,” Warner Music Group CEO Steve Cooper said. “That’s a tremendous achievement, especially coming on the heels of Q1, when we achieved the highest quarterly revenue in our sixteen-year history as a standalone company.”

Anna Washenko