Max Hole Upped At UMGI

Max Hole has risen from COO to chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group International.

The new  role essentially confirms Hole’s standing as the top record exec outside the U.S., and it comes at the start of what promises to be an engrossing year for Universal’s top brass as it integrates its operations with EMI Music.

The latest promotion is effective from Jan. 1, 2013 and was announced today by Universal Music Group chairman and CEO Lucian Grainge, to whom Hole reports.

Hole is now elevated to the same title Grainge had vacated in July 2010, when he relocated from the U.K. to the U.S. to take leadership of UMG as its chairman and CEO.

Hole continues to be based in London, where he’s tasked with responsibilities for all of the company’s operations in the world outside the United States. He also oversees the music major’s worldwide classical music business, which include the Deutsche Grammophon and Decca Classics labels.

“Max has played an invaluable part in the evolution and success of our international business,” Grainge comments in a statement. “And now with our historic acquisition of EMI, there is no one better to lead our efforts outside the United States. I’ve had the pleasure of knowing him for more than three decades, and not only is he one of the most experienced, accomplished executives in our business, he is also a true music man.”

Adds Hole, “The future for the music industry is looking brighter than it has for some time, and there’s no shortage of energy, innovation and creativity in Universal’s companies around the world. I’m looking forward to working with new colleagues and artists from EMI, and integrating our two great companies successfully.  2013 will be an exciting year for all of us.”

Formerly executive VP of UMGI and president of the company’s Asia Pacific region, Hole joined the company in 1998 from Warner Music U.K. to become senior VP of marketing and A&R. He was promoted to executive VP in 2004 and became COO in July 2010, a role which saw him tasked with Universal’s operations outside of North America, the United Kingdom and France.

Hole’s promotion is reward for the exec’s big playmaking role for Universal’s international business. Hole was central to Universal’s worldwide recording and artist services agreement for “The Voice” TV franchise and he’s been instrumental in bringing to Universal Music the likes of Taylor Swift, Queen and the Eagles. Also, Hole played a key role in shepherding the Songs for JapanITAL charity album and Chinese search engine Baidu’s landmark licensing agreement with One-Stop China, a joint venture established by Universal, Sony Music Entertainment and Warner Music Group.