Music business

Universal’s Virgin Music enters global partnership with Australian band Mushroom

The Virgin Music Label & Artist Services (VLMAS) division of Universal Music Group has entered into a global partnership with Australia’s largest group of independent labels, Mushroom, to support and distribute the releases of Mushroom artists worldwide, outside Australia and New Zealand.

The Mushroom label division remains 100% independently owned and its established ANZ operations will remain unchanged following the partnership.

Mushroom will continue to distribute digitally in ANZ, as members of Merlin, and will continue its longstanding physical distribution partnership with Universal Music Australia.

Under the terms of the agreement, VLMAS will provide global promotion, marketing and audience labeling services to Mushroom’s existing US and UK infrastructure.

Additionally, according to Mushroom, “in order to take full advantage of UMG’s global infrastructure and support”, the releases of selected Mushroom artists will be released through UMG’s network of major labels, upon agreement by both parties.

To co-lead the global operations of the Mushroom Label division, Mushroom has appointed highly respected UK Music Director Korda Marshall as International Director.

Based in London, Marshall leaves BMG, which bought Infectious Records in 2014 and found global success with bands like alt-J, DMA’S, Bloc Party, Ry-X, Richard Ashcroft and The Temper Trap.

Marshall served as General Manager at Mushroom Records prior to its sale to News Corp in 1998, where he was instrumental in the success of Muse, Garbage, Ash and Paul Oakenfold.

the group of mushrooms was founded by the late Australian music industry icon Michael Gudinski, and is now run by his son Matt.

To launch the new partnership, Mushroom revealed that their next releases will come from DMA’S (following their UK #4, Australian #2 and Scottish #1 album The light), Spotify global radar artist thank you, mercy, buzz act Mia Wray and Radio 1 backed artist Yen Strange.

Marshall’s first UK signing is the epithet joshua, with Mushroom’s full release schedule to be revealed in the coming months.


Universal Music Group launched Virgin Music Label & Artist Services in January 2021 as a global division serving independent artists and labels that UMG says are “inspired and influenced by the spirit and ethos of the iconic label. Virgin Records”.

The move saw US-based Caroline – the independent services division of UMG-owned Capitol Music Group – as well as Caroline’s operations in the UK, France and Germany rebranded as Virgin Music Label & Artist Services.

Since its launch in January 2021, VMLAS has opened divisions in the United States, Japan, United Kingdom, Germany and throughout Central Europe, France, Australia and New Zealand, Sweden, Norway, the Netherlands, Belgium, the Western Balkans, Brazil, Mexico, Spain and Portugal. . He indicates that other markets will be launched in the coming months.

“I’m so happy to be back at the Mushroom Group, I feel like I’m coming home after a long and winding journey in the music world and I can’t wait to work with all the labels and their amazing artists. “

Korda Marshall

Of the partnership, Marshall said, “I’m so happy to be back at The Band Mushroom, I feel like I’m coming home from a long and winding road trip in the music world and I’ve looking forward to working with all the labels and their incredible artists.

“Our new contract with Universal provides a fantastic opportunity to work closely with one of the best music companies in the world.

“Lucian, David and the Virgin teams led by Vanessa, Jim, Jacqueline and Matt have all been very impressive and together we can become a true alternative home for great talent and creative ideas.”

“Mushroom has been a market leader for decades in Australia and today we are taking another important step in transforming Mushroom into a truly global brand.”

Matt Gudinski, Mushroom

Mushroom Managing Director, Matt Gudinski, said: “Mushroom has been a market leader for decades in Australia and today we are taking another important step in making Mushroom a truly global brand.

“Our A&R staff are world class and we, together with Virgin/UMG, will bring artists from any part of the globe to any part of the globe.

“Lucian, David and the team at Virgin are better positioned than any other music company to help us achieve our ambition and we are delighted to form this partnership.”

“We are delighted to work with Matt Gudinski, who honors his father’s great legacy by taking Mushroom to new heights, and with Korda who has been a force in the UK creative community for decades.”

Sir Lucian Grainge, Universal Music Group

Sir Lucian Grainge, Chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group, said: “This global alliance between Mushroom and Virgin Music marks the start of a new collaboration between two historically entrepreneurial companies who have both introduced countless superstar artists and helped shape and influence independent music. for decades.

“We are delighted to work with Matt Gudinski, who honors his father’s great legacy by taking Mushroom to new heights, and with Korda who has been a force in the UK creative community for decades.”

“We felt musically and culturally aligned with Virgin/UMG from our first encounters and we look forward to getting together.

Chris Maund, mushroom label

Mushroom Label COO Chris Maund said: “With Mushroom Labels’ unique mix of niche alternative artists to these dominating charts, this partnership with Virgin/Universal gives us the flexibility and range necessary to achieve results at all levels.

“We felt musically and culturally aligned with Virgin/UMG from our first encounters and look forward to staying there.”

“Virgin Music and Mushroom are two labels focused on entrepreneurship and innovation.”

David Joseph, Universal Music UK

David Joseph, President and CEO of Universal Music UK, said: “Virgin Music and Mushroom are two labels focused on entrepreneurship and innovation.

“This is a natural partnership bringing together two exceptional teams who are aligned on a very simple philosophy: to provide first-class choice and service to artists and their businesses on a truly global scale.”

“VMLAS’ global network offers Mushroom labels a new way to connect with the world and reach more music fans than ever before.”

Vanessa Bosåen, Virgin Music Label and Artist Services

Vanessa Bosåen, MD, Virgin Music Label & Artist Services UK, said: “Mushroom Group has long been admired as an exceptional home for artists and Virgin Music is absolutely delighted to be partnering with such a range of labels.

“VMLAS’ global network offers Mushroom labels a new way to connect to the world and reach more music fans than ever before.

“We will work together across time zones, genres and borders to build the future of how independent labels can operate on the global stage.”

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