Universal Music Plans 100 to 150 Super Audio CD Releases in 2005

Universal Music continues to be a major player in the Super Audio CD market, announcing today that it plans to issue 100 to 150 new SACD titles in 2005. It also announced that has added Super Audio CD releases to its DVD team’s formal assignments and scope.

According to Sony Super Audio CD Project Director David Kawakami, Universal Music is already a key player in the format. Kawakami indicates that of the 80 to 90 Super Audio CD releases that are issued worldwide each month, Universal Music is responsible for 10 of them. According to Paul Bishow of Universal Music’s eLabs group, this pace will bring the total number of SACD titles from Universal Music to 350 by the end of 2004.

Universal Music Plans 100 to 150 New SACDs in 2005
As part of their continuing commitment to the SACD format, Universal Music’s announcement indicates that they plan to release between 100 to 150 Super Audio CD titles in the coming year. This is in addition to the SACD releases already on the books for the weeks ahead which include upcoming SACDs from artists including Elton John, Eric Clapton, Keane, Nine Inch Nails, Bob Marley, Andrea Bocelli, Renee Fleming and Herbie Hancock.

Universal Music’s Olivier Robert-Murphy says that

“Do DVD-Video and SA-CD compliment each other – sure. There’s one to watch and one to listen to – but both using the same surround machine. Exploiting SA-CD and DVD together is a clear sign that Universal Music believes SA-CD is a winning format and intends to continue investing in it. As we have done for the last two years, we will continue to support SA-CD in 2005. We intend to release somewhere between 100 and 150 titles next year – some on SA-CD only and most of them day and date with new albums.”


SACD Added to DVD & Surround Format Group
Today’s announcement from Universal Music indicates that Olivier Robert-Murphy, who is based in London and is now Universal Music’s Vice President of International DVD & Surround Formats, will now be responsible for Universal Music’s SACD program on an international basis as well. Robert-Murphy says that

“There are many synergies between DVD and SA-CD, surround sound being the most obvious aspect. This team has considerable experience – in DVD and new formats in general, which will enable us to create strong surround products and to market them effectively.”


Universal Music’s announcement goes on to say that

“Robert-Murphy’s team will be the champions of SA-CD and surround releases within Universal Music. They will promote the format and ensure a regular and significant flow of surround releases and do what it has to make SA-CD a winning format. The team’s credentials to do this job are impressive. Looking at DVD-Video, it is responsible for the entire release process from acquisition to sales, with over 100 releases a year including new releases and back catalogue. The team has been successful in implementing DVD-Video in Universal Music, establishing it as the leading player in the music DVD World.”