Mexican superstar Alejandro Fernández, who during his career has successfully married ranchera and pop music, has signed a new recording deal with Universal Music Latin Entertainment (UMLE). The deal, which had been negotiated for months, was finalized late in the afternoon today (Dec. 9) at UMLE’s offices in Mexico City. Fernández, the son of ranchera icon Vicente Fernandez, had spent the entirety of his 16-year recording career as a Sony artist.

Although UMLE did not disclose details about the deal, Jesús López, chairman of Universal Music Latin America/Iberian Peninsula, and president of UMLE, said it was not a typical label deal nor a typical 360 deal. Rather, he called it a “flexible” arrangement that allows for different types of income.

Under UMLE's structure, Fernandez's pop albums will be released on Universal Music Latino and his regional Mexican albums will be released under Fonovisa.

Fernández is the latest high-profile Latin artist with a healthy sales and touring career to leave a longtime label. Earlier this year, another Sony BMG Latin star, Ricardo Arjona, left the label for Warner Music Latina, with whom he signed a traditional recording deal.

Fernández is an anomaly in that he straddles two very different genres with equal ease, reaching multiple markets, including Spain. The singer released his self-titled debut on Sony in 1992 and the ranchera album positioned him as a rising star in a traditional music genre. Later, in 1997, Fernández crossed over into pop with “Me Estoy Enamorando,” an album produced by Emilio Estefan, and established himself as a pan-regional star whose music sold successfully throughout Latin America and the United States.

All told, Fernández has sold 15 million albums worldwide, according to published reports. In the United States alone, he’s sold 2.2 million albums, according to Nielsen SoundScan.