In a time when flat is the new up, Universal Music Group is having a pretty good year.

In the third quarter of 2010, the UMG's revenue was up 6% (down 3% at constant currency) to 1.03 billion euros ($1.39 billion). Earnings before interest, taxes and amortization (EBITA) was up 47% (up 34% at constant currency) to 85 million euros ($116 million). The company's earnings were released on Monday with the quarterly results of parent company Vivendi.

In the first nine months of 2010, UMG's revenue dropped just 1.7% (down 6.3% at constant currency) to 2.9 billion euros ($3.99 billion). EBITA was down 9.3% (14.7% at constant currency) to 244 million euros ($332 million). Digital sales in that period increased 18.5%.

UMG's performance looks good over the past 12 months, too. Over the last four quarters (Q4 2009 to Q3 2010), the company's revenue was 4.3 billion euros ($5.87 billion), a 4% decline over the previous four-quarter period. Over that same period, UMG's EBITA was 555 million euros ($756 million), up 1.5% over the previous four-quarter period.

In comparison, in the first six months of Sony Music's current fiscal year (April through September), revenue was down 5.2% and operating income was up 11.4%. Warner Music Group reports earnings on Wednesday.

UMG parent company Vivendi posted a 7% increase in revenues in the first nine months of 2010. Fueled by strong results at videogame company Activision Blizzard, Vivendi's EBITA was up 10%. Revenues at Activision Blizzard increased 15% to 2.28 billion euros ($3.1 billion) and EBITA rose 69% to 686 million euros ($933 million) in the first nine months of the year.

Other Vivendi business units such as SFR, Maroc Telecom Group and Canal+ Group posted positive growth in both the third quarter and year to date.

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