SANTA MONICA AND NEW YORK, April 23, 2012 – Furthering the company’s commitment to diversify and pursue non-traditional revenue streams for its labels and artists, Cynthia Sexton has been appointed Executive Vice President, Branding and Licensing, Universal Republic Records & Island Def Jam Music Group, a division of Universal Music Group (UMG).   The announcement was made today by Ivan Gavin, Chief Operating Officer, Universal Republic & Island Def Jam, to whom Ms. Sexton will report.  Ms. Sexton will be based in UMG’s Santa Monica offices.

In this newly created role, Ms. Sexton will generate and execute strategic alliances for the label’s roster of chart topping artists such as Rihanna, Kanye West, Drake, Lil Wayne, Mariah Carey, Nikki Minaj, Florence + The Machine and Justin Bieber, working closely with label heads Monte Lipman, President, Universal Republic and Steve Bartels, Chief Operating Officer, Island Def Jam and their respective staffs. She will be responsible for seeking out partnerships with consumer brands as well as opportunities in film & television music licensing.

“We are thrilled to have an executive of Cynthia’s caliber join us,” stated Mr. Gavin.  “She is one of the original architects of branding and licensing in the music industry and we are looking forward to having her exceptional skill set and contacts put our labels and artists at the top of the list for creative partnerships.”

“We are blessed to be involved with the most premiere roster of artists in the world and they deserve the kind of service that Cynthia will provide,” said Barry Weiss, Chairman & CEO, Island Def Jam Motown and Universal Republic Label Group. “We are thrilled to have her on board.”

“Universal Republic and Island Def Jam are home to the industry’s most important and hottest artists,” commented Ms. Sexton. “I’d like to thank Ivan for giving me this opportunity and having the vision to continue to build this growing sector of the music industry.”

Most recently, Ms. Sexton was president of Sexton, her own boutique branding and licensing agency for brand clients seeking to enter the music space.   Prior to opening her own shop, she served as Executive Vice President, Global Brand Partnerships, Licensing and Synchronization for EMI Music, where she had responsibility for the licensing of all EMI assets for inclusion in film, television and branded products and services on a worldwide basis. She oversaw partnership efforts on behalf of EMI’s labels and artists with consumer brands, including Nissan, Apple, Diet Coke, L’Oreal, Target, Ford, Royal Caribbean, General Motors, Logitech UE and Sauza Tequila among others.  Additionally, Ms. Sexton led efforts to establish EMI’s Mobile Applications and Video Game business, working closely with Ubisoft, Electronic Arts (EA), Activision and others.  She was instrumental in delivering the groundbreaking video game, “The Beatles: Rock Band,” with partner Harmonix Music Systems.

Before ascending to EMI Music North America, Ms. Sexton held a number of senior roles in licensing, marketing and new media at EMI’s Virgin Records, where she spearheaded many of the label’s earliest strategic marketing and digital initiatives. She joined Virgin Records and Virgin Publishing in 1988 as Head of Business Affairs.


About Universal Music Group

Universal Music Group is the world’s leading music company with wholly owned operations in 60 territories. Its businesses also include Universal Music Publishing Group, the industry’s leading global music publishing operation.

Universal Music Group’s record labels include A&M/Octone, Decca, Def Jam Recordings, Deutsche Grammophon, Disa, Emarcy, Fonovisa, Geffen Records, Interscope Records, Island Records, Lost Highway Records, Machete Music, MCA Nashville, Mercury Nashville, Mercury Records, Motown Records, Polydor Records, Universal Music Latino, Universal Republic and Verve Music Group as well as a multitude of record labels owned or distributed by its record company subsidiaries around the world. The Universal Music Group owns the most extensive catalogue of music in the industry, which includes the last 100 years of the world’s most popular artists and their recordings. UMG’s catalogue is marketed through two distinct divisions, Universal Music Enterprises (in the U.S.) and Universal Strategic Marketing (outside the U.S.). Universal Music Group also includes Global Digital Business, its new media and technologies division and Bravado, its merchandising company.

Universal Music Group is a unit of Vivendi, a global media and communications company.