Sunday, June 16, 2024

BMG rejigs US frontline recorded music teams; names Alexandra Behrens as SVP of Global People Excellence

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Alexandra Behrens has been appointed Senior Vice President of Global People Excellence at BMG, as the music publishing and recording company also announced new changes to its US frontline recorded music teams.

Behrens will lead BMG’s global People Excellence team, overseeing HR services and operations across all BMG locations. She brings extensive experience from her previous role at Bertelsmann sister company Gruner + Jahr, where she recently led the People Management & Services team. Behrens will report to CHRO Nikola Holle-Spiegel.

“We are delighted to welcome Alexandra to BMG. Her extensive experience and strategic vision in people management make her a perfect fit for our team. Alexandra’s leadership will be instrumental in driving our global HR initiatives and fostering a culture of excellence across all of our locations,” said Holle-Spiegel.

Behrens added, “I am excited to join BMG and contribute to its dynamic and innovative culture. I look forward to working with the global teams to enhance our HR services and operations worldwide to ensure we continue to attract, retain and develop the best talent in the industry.”

In a separate announcement on Monday (June 10), BMG unveiled its revamped US Frontline Recorded organizational structure in line with its newly implemented BMG Next strategy. The restructuring seeks to enhance the support and services offered to BMG’s artist partners, BMG said.

Jon Loba, formerly President, Frontline Recordings, BMG North America, has been promoted to President of Frontline Recordings, The Americas. Loba will now oversee operations across the US, Canada, Mexico, and Brazil, leading a team of executives based in Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, and other key locations. The reorganized label group will manage new music releases across a diverse range of genres, including Pop, Rock, R&B/Hip-Hop, Country, and Latin.

JoJamie Hahr, Executive Vice President of Recorded Music, BMG Nashville, will oversee the day-to-day management of BBR Music Group and its various imprints, which include Broken Bow Records (home to artists like Jason Aldean and Lainey Wilson), Stoney Creek Records (featuring Jelly Roll and Parmalee), and Wheelhouse Records (with artists such as Blanco Brown and Chayce Beckham). Hahr has been with BMG since 2017 following the acquisition of BBR Music Group and will report directly to Loba.

In Los Angeles, Dan Gill, Executive Vice President of Recorded Music, West Coast, will oversee BMG’s recorded music genre leads for Pop, Rock, R&B/Hip-Hop, and international outbound repertoire. Gill, who joined BMG in 2014 through the acquisition of Vagrant Records, has overseen chart-toppers by artists like blink-182 and Janet Jackson. He will report directly to Loba.

Cyndi Lynott, Senior Vice President of Marketing, will lead BMG’s recorded frontline Pop strategy. Lynott has a history of album releases from artists such as 5 Seconds of Summer, Avril Lavigne, Evanescence, Jason Mraz, Jennifer Lopez, Lindsey Stirling, MONSTA X and Slash. She joined BMG in 2018 and was promoted to her current role in 2021.

Sean Heydorn, Senior Vice President of Rise Records, will now lead the recorded frontline Rock segment, overseeing the development of new and established rock artists, including Godsmack, Lenny Kravitz, Polyphia, Spiritbox, and Sum 41, and those under Rise Records. Heydorn joined BMG in 2015.

Tim Reid, Senior Vice President of Repertoire & Marketing, will continue to lead the development of the R&B/Hip-Hop genre, managing LA-based Hip-Hop/Rap label RBC Records. Reid joined BMG in 2014. His recent signings include multi-Platinum rappers Wiz Khalifa and YG, R&B singer Kiana Lede, and Grammy-nominated artist-producer Terrace Martin and his Sounds of Crenshaw imprint.

Shane Cosme, Senior Vice President of International Marketing, who joined BMG in 2018, will handle global marketing efforts for US-based repertoire. Cosme led campaigns for 5 Seconds of Summer, Jamie Miller, LP, MONSTA X, Sum 41, and YG.

Lynott, Heydorn, Reid and Cosme will all report to Gill.

BMG also appointed Jecoure Lamothe, Vice President of A&R and Marketing, to manage day-to-day operations for RBC Records and oversee releases from artists like Chief Keef. Lamothe, who joined BMG in 2018, will report to Reid.

Zarah Ortiz, Vice President of Repertoire & Campaign Management, based in Miami, will oversee the LATAM repertoire strategy in Mexico and Brazil, reporting to Loba.

In Canada, Bryan Columbus has been appointed Vice President of Recorded Music and will lead frontline recording efforts from Toronto, also reporting to Loba.

The restructuring of the company’s US frontline recorded music teams comes as BMG’s owner, European media giant Bertelsmann, reportedly wants to grow BMG through a merger with a rival or a “breakout investment.”

Bertelsmann CEO Thomas Rabe told The Financial Times in March: “BMG could potentially be an opportunity for a breakout investment and joining forces with a competitor… If the opportunity arose to significantly grow BMG by joining forces with another music company, we would consider it.”

In October 2023, BMG implemented a reorganization, laying off around 40 employees, or 3% of the company’s global staff.

The move follows a decision by BMG under CEO Thomas Coesfeld to take the digital distribution of BMG’s music in-house, bringing the company’s longstanding distribution deal with Warner Music Group/ADA to an end. The company has since confirmed that it has inked a deal with Universal Music Group to handle its physical distribution business.

The organizational shakeup has led to the departure of Fred Casimir, EVP of Global Repertoire, towards the end of 2023. In March, Dominique Casimir resigned as Chief Content Officer, while Steve Redmond stepped down as Global Head of Communications last month.

Music Business Worldwide

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