Welcome to the latest episode of Talking Trends, the weekly podcast from Music Business Worldwide – where we go deep behind the headlines of news stories affecting the entertainment industry. Talking Trends is supported by Voly Music.
This week on Talking Trends, MBW founder, Tim Ingham, discusses the stunning amount of money paid to Universal Music Group boss, Sir Lucian Grainge, in 2021.
Ingham (pictured) calculates that Grainge pulled in around $45 million in basic salary plus annual bonuses in 2021, in addition to a nine-figure one-time payment related to Universal's flotation on the Amsterdam stock exchange in September.
Grainge's astronomical payday in 2021 has agitated some sections of the music industry, but Ingham argues why – from a Universal shareholder perspective – the British exec was "worth every penny" of the huge one-time payout he received.
Much of this week's episode comments on this Guardian article from November 2021, and why it's problematic to compare the one-time payments of a public company CEO/Chairman to the annual cumulative royalties of UK songwriters in 2019.