Universal Music Group has conquered the U.S. albums chart in record fashion by bagging nine of the top 10 albums.
For the week ending 27th August, UMG-released LPs rule the top three on the Billboard 200, with folklore by Taylor Swift (Republic Records) at No. 1; Shoot for the Stars Aim for the Moon by Pop Smoke (Victor Victor Worldwide/Republic) at No. 2 and Legends Never Die by Juice WRLD (Grade A/Interscope) at No. 3.
The music major also owns Nos 5 to 10.
Only the Hamilton cast recording at No. 4, released via Hamilton Uptown/Atlantic and distributed through Warner Music’s WEA, prevents a clean sweep for UMG.
It’s just the fourth time one record company has claimed nine of the top 10 in the chart’s 64-year history.
On each of those occasions, UMG did all the damage: in November 2013, September 2018, and November 2018.
“UMG’s unprecedented track record on the album chart is a direct result of our long-term commitment to our artists—providing them with the best resources and expertise the industry has to offer,” comments Lucian Grainge, Chairman and CEO of UMG, in a statement.
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“Behind each of these incredible albums are teams of dedicated employees, partners and entrepreneurs who are guided by a shared passion for helping artists achieve their full creative and commercial potential,” Grainge adds, “and I salute all of them.”
UMG isn’t just the biggest music company on the planet in terms of chart success. A deal struck with China’s Tencent on New puts any argument on its status to bed.
On New Year’s Eve, a consortium led by the giant digital conglomerate announced it would buy 10% of UMG for $3.4 billion, valuing the music giant at north of $30 billion.
Tencent has until Jan. 15, 2021 to decide if it will buy an additional 10% stake at the same price, a deal agreed on at the time.
UMG parent Vivendi later confirmed it’s looking to sell further minority stakes in has reached out to several banks to facilitate the process.