HITS Daily Double


How the Labels Fared This Year; Eighth in a Series

After a blazing 2013, and having shaken off a slow start, Republic is ending 2014 with a “Bang Bang.”

April’s East Coast realignment—overseen with finesse by UMG’s Michele Anthony—also put the marketshare of David Massey’s Island in Lipman’s basket. This transition took place just as Massey began a hot streak that’s included the breakout of Tove Lo, a solid showing by Nick Jonas and a new hit from Fall Out Boy. The uptick helped Republic move from #3-1 in label marketshare.

Swift’s monster album and enormous singles follow on the heels of the multi-smash album from Ariana Grande; the growth of Grammy-snagging superstar Lorde, via Jason Flom’s Lava; ongoing successes from Slim and Baby’s Cash Money stalwarts Nicki Minaj and Drake; Republic Nashville’s Florida Georgia Line; and Alt-radio champs Milky Chance.

Lipman, EVP Charlie Walk and their promo ninjas including SVP Gary Spangler simply killed it with this huge slate of records; in October they overtook Interscope for the Mediabase radio chart-share crown (earning an impressive 14.7), and mere weeks later had the top three songs on the Top 40 chart.

Walk expanded the reach of his marketing efforts—particularly on behalf of Grande, working with another marketing wiz, manager Scooter Braun.

Lipman also brought in VH1 veteran Rick Krim as EVP Artist Development and Ron Cerrito as SVP Alternative and Rock Promotion.

Lipman and Walk also inked a unique label deal with fashion icon John Varvatos, with Zac Brown as its first signing.

Grammy-nomination time fetched, among others, three nods for Swift, including Record and Song of the Year and Pop Solo, while Grande made the Pop Vocal Album finals and shared the Pop Duo/Group nom for "Bang Bang." YMCMB's Drake and Nicki Minaj were both honored for Rap Song, with Drake also getting a nod in the Rap Performance category. The Band Perry is a Country Duo/Group contender, while Big Machine's Tim McGraw and Glen Campbell tribute also earned nods.

There were a couple of setbacks—an expected Lil Wayne album didn’t arrive in time for a Q4 release, and newly inked rock veterans Nickelback met with disappointing sales—but given the array of huge records paying off, it’s been a very good year for the ethos.

The looming question: Will Lipman and company succeed in renewing their lucrative deals with Borchetta and Flom?

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