MARTIN BANDIER, 74
Chairman/CEO, Sony/ATV Music Publishing
Last Year's Rank: 4
As 2015 was ending, longtime publishing kingpin Martin Bandier faced an uncommonly uncertain future: Not only was Sony/ATV's ownership in doubt, with equal stakeholders Sony Corp. and the Michael Jackson estate vying for control, but he was without a contract. "We are dealing with an internal corporate shareholder buy/sell arrangement," Bandier told Billboard in January, "although it's not like the company is for sale." In early 2016, though, Bandier signed a new three-year deal, keeping him atop the industry's leading publisher no matter who buys the company. It's easy to see why: In 2015, Sony/ATV's revenue grew to $436 million in the first nine months, from $409 million in 2014, and it finished the year with an estimated 30 percent market share. Bandier, a married father of three, also has assumed a key leadership position in fighting for better songwriter compensation from streaming companies through direct deals -- he was the first publisher to sign with Pandora -- and lobbying the U.S. Department of Justice. "Despite the industry challenges, we continue to grow our business," he says. "I am confident that we will continue to be the world's leading publisher."