Reservoir Media reported Tuesday (Nov. 7) that revenue grew by 15% year-over-year to $38.4 million for the second quarter of fiscal 2024, ending Sept. 30, 2023. During the quarter, the independent music company acquired new catalogs like Joe Walsh, Latin music icon Rudy Perez and country writer Brent Maher as well as continued expansion in its Arabic music catalog through its partnership with PopArabia — contributing to its inorganic growth.
This quarter’s rise in revenue, up from $33.3 million in Q2 of fiscal 2023, was mostly thanks to growth in its recorded music division, which was up 22% from last year’s second quarter, and publishing, which was up 8%. Reservoir notes that the growth in recorded music is largely driven by Chrysalis Music (acquired in 2019) and Tommy Boy (acquired in 2021) and partially offset by lower synchronization and film/tv licensing revenue, likely hindered by the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes.
Chrysalis’ sprawling catalog of masters includes “Dancing With Myself” by Generation X and “Nothing Compares 2 U” by Sinead O’Connor, whose catalog saw a 2,885% spike in listenership after her death earlier this quarter. Tommy Boy is home to some of hip-hop’s most pioneering players, including De La Soul, the trio that Reservoir ushered on to streaming services for the first time during Q4 of fiscal year 2023 to a solid monetary boost.
In the publishing sector of their business, Reservoir’s revenue reached $25.9 million, compared to $24.1 million in last fiscal year’s second quarter. The gain was a product of strong results in performance and mechanical revenue in particular. Performance monies were up 47% YoY and mechanical was up 25% YoY. These wins, however, were offset by changes with the Copyright Royalty Board — which regulates publishing royalty rates in the U.S. — Reservoir says, leading to a decrease in digital by $2.1 million which was recognized in the prior year quarter related to the newly affirmed royalty rates for the 2018-2022 period.
The company also signed a handful of award-winning frontline songwriters in the past quarter, including Steph Jones, Rob Ragosta, Cam Becker, Josh Record, and Wé Ani.
Adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA), a closely watched metric of profitability, was up 24% this quarter to $15.9 million.
Founder and CEO, Golnar Khosrowshahi, says the company is confident in its position, both in the U.S. and emerging markets “We are encouraged by the growing opportunities internationally and welcome recent additions of El Sawareekh and RE Media expanding our presence in the emerging markets,” she says. “We will continue to pursue acquisitions in the U.S. and across the globe, and we have the right team and strategy to close accretive deals enhancing the portfolio and building long term value for the business and our shareholders.”
Jim Heindlmeyer, CFO, says that, as a result of the company’s “consistent progress against our strategic growth plan demonstrates the resilience of our business model and ongoing tailwinds from the growing music industry,” Reservoir is raising both its revenue and adjusted EBITDA guidance for fiscal 2024. “We are pleased to announce another quarter of strong performance, driven by meaningful top-line growth in both business segments,” he says.
The company’s outlook for fiscal 2024:
- Revenue is anticipated to be $133 million-$137 million for the year ending March 31, 2024, with 10% growth at midpoint
- Adjusted EBITDA is expected to be between $50 million-$52 million with 10% growth at midpoint
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