Warner Music Group has announced the launch of WMX, a services division that is intended to connect artists with fans and amplify brands. The new division includes a rebranded WEA commercial services & marketing network, as well as the company’s media & creative content arm. (WEA, an acronym that dates back 50 years, stood for Warner-Elektra-Atlantic and has long been the name of WMG’s physical-product distribution unit.)
According to the announcement, the rebrand brings into focus key aspects of Warner Music’s value proposition to artists, including a centralized in-house creative agency that encompasses merch and D2C, alongside expertise in streaming, vinyl, ticketing, fashion collaborations, gaming, social, experiential, and other fan experiences.
The announcement also states that WMX reaches a “connected, culturally curious audience of music lovers totaling more than 249 million monthly unique visitors.” This is driven by the company’s owned media, which include Uproxx, the youth culture & music destination; Songkick, the live music app; and HipHopDX, the hip-hop media platform. In addition, WMX ranks as a top five video media company for 18-34 audiences in the U.S., generating over 46 billion monthly views through music-centric content on YouTube channels including the Pit and Indie Mixtape, as well as streaming and social platforms.
Led by WMX President Maria Weaver, who joined WMG a year ago, the rebrand brings together five key functions that work together to maximize reach and impact:
- Commercial Services, helmed by Elsa Vivero, General Manager / Executive Vice President, Global Commercial Services, WMX;
- Media Business, led by Benjamin Blank, President of Media & Creative Content, WMX;
- Artist & Fan Experiences, headed by Danielle Lee, President, Warner Music Artist and Fan Experiences, WMX;
- E-Commerce & Retail, run by Ernst Trapp, President, Global E-Commerce & Retail, WMX;
- Audience Strategy, managed by Scott Cherkin, SVP, Audience Engagement, WMX.
Weaver said: “The role of a record label is growing, artists are pushing creative boundaries, and consumer behavior is ever-changing. WEA was the first to put a global backbone behind distribution and really expand what a music company can offer. With that same pioneering spirit, we’re evolving our company to position Warner Music and its artists for huge opportunities today and in the future. WMX is creating immersive, innovative, and impactful experiences, while empowering artists to grow their careers and deepen their vital connections with their fans. We’re excited to bring artists, audiences, and advertisers together in powerful ways.”
Max Lousada, WMG’s CEO of recorded music: “The music business is no longer linear, transactional, and based around one format. It’s complex, multi-faceted, and interactive. There’s an ever-expanding universe of opportunities for talent to build devoted fanbases and extend their brands. In this rapidly evolving attention economy, WMX is designed to provide our artists and labels with a deep, dynamic range of services – covering everything from streaming to merch to branded content and beyond. Under Maria’s outstanding leadership, WMX will help differentiate Warner Music, as we attract and amplify original artists.”