WMG revenues, losses narrow in Q2

Digital revenue up 8% to $222 million

Warner Music Group reported Wednesday that its revenues and net losses both declined in the company’s second fiscal quarter ended March 31.

WMG’s revenues narrowed 8% vs. the same quarter in 2011, falling to $628 million from $684 million. Firm said growth in Japan, Asia, Italy and Canada was offset by weakness in the U.S. and most of Europe.

The company attributed the revenue drop to a lighter release schedule and a continuing decline in physical revenue from recorded music.

Net losses narrowed 5% to $36 million from $38 million a year earlier.

In recorded music, an 8% increase in digital revenue (to $222 million) was the only bright spot on the books. Overall, the division’s revenue plunged 9% to $503 million, while operating income fell 30% to $48 million.

WMG’s major sellers for the quarter were EDM artist Skrillez, rock duo the Black Keys, pop singer Bruno Mars and U.K. artist Ed Sheeran.

Music publishing revenue slipped 7% to $128 million from $137 million. Though synch revenue increased 3.2%, performance revenue declined 6%, in part due to reduction in domestic radio license fees.

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