Universal Music's newly named CIO to take on streaming data insights
- Universal Music Group (UMG) named Dan Morales CIO to oversee the music company's global technology platforms and develop systems to further support its data and analytics platforms, according to a company announcement Wednesday.
- His appointment will go into effect on April 15 and he will report to UMG's EVP, CFO and president of Operations Boyd Muir.
- Morales is transitioning from his CIO role at eBay where he is credited with "transforming eBay Inc.'s technology infrastructure," according to the announcement. He had been CIO at eBay since 2014 and served in other technical leadership roles at Bank of America and Continental Airlines, according to his LinkedIn profile.
The business model for the music industry has changed and has gained more itemized data that demands insight in consumer behavior. Morales will be tasked with building platforms to help UMG make sense of it all.
For decades, the music industry sold vinyls, CDs, or tracks with little knowledge of how the music was consumed after the initial purchase. But the introduction of services like Spotify and Apple Music give music companies like UMG insights into what countries listen to certain artists, what tracks are most played or whether consumers specifically search a song.
UMG's former CTO was not really connected to its CIO. The CTO role was dedicated more to digital strategy. Morales is expected to help take on one of the largest transformations the music industry has seen in the last five years — the introduction of streaming music.
With heavy-weight artists like Bruce Springsteen and Lady Gaga and impressive earnings, UMG is a heavyweight in the music industry. In the last several years, the company searched for candidates in a similar way it searches for the next hot musical artist.
The changing of the technical guards at UMG comes at a time when French media parent company Vivendi continues to mull over a sale of up to half of UMG's share capital, according to Vivendi CEO Arnaud de Puyfontaine, during the company's Q4 2018 earnings call last month.
The French media company announced the move in July but the process is a heavy lift and includes completing a corporate structure reorganization for UMG, according to de Puyfontaine. Vivendi is preparing an attractive-to-buyers corporate structure to make UMG a free standing entity.
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