YouTube hires music industry veteran Lyor Cohen

lyor-cohenLyor Cohen is joining the YouTube team as global head of music. The long-time music industry veteran is the CEO and founder of 300 Entertainment. He has also held long tenures in the upper ranks at Warner Music Group and Def Jam, including presiding over large mergers at both labels.

Cohen sent a letter to YouTube’s music team detailing his rough plans for the business. He focused on getting the industry to embrace new technologies, continuing to break new songs and artists, and building a more collaborative relationship with the industry side.

“Over the last two decades we have seen dramatic shifts, both to the inherent value of music and the literal value that people are willing to pay,” he wrote. “And while change has been met with understandable resistance, I strongly believe that this transformation provides opportunities that will be larger and more rewarding for both artists and the music industry.”

“As we enter the growth era of the music industry, Lyor is in a position to make tremendous difference in accelerating that growth in a fair way for everyone,” Chief Business Officer Robert Kyncl said. “We are thrilled to welcome him to YouTube.”

Anna Washenko