NEW YORK (AP) — Jimmy Iovine and his boss had been grooming John Janick for two years to lead Interscope Geffen A&M since Beats Electronics continued to grow rapidly with its headphone line and streaming service.
Lucian Grainge — the CEO and chairman of IGA's parent label, Universal Music Group — said he wasn't expecting Iovine to leave the company, but knew he needed an executive to handle the label's daily tasks since Iovine had been so busy — and successful — outside of it.
"That part of it was unexpected," he said of Iovine's move to Apple following the announcement Wednesday to acquire Beats Electronic for $3 billion.
"It just became inevitable that strategically we would have to plan for someone to actually run the record company on a day-to-day basis," he said. "It had always been in my thinking and in Jimmy's thinking that he would be around pretty much forever in some capacity around Interscope, probably in a non-exec way."
Iovine launched IGA in 1989. Its roster includes U2, Eminem and Lady Gaga. Janick, who is currently IGA's chief operating officer and president, joined in 2012, and will officially lead the label later this year.
The 36-year-old Janick, one of the youngest executives to lead a top label, made his stamp on the industry when he founded the independent label Fueled by Ramen in 1996 when he was just 18. He signed the platinum-selling band fun., who had a breakthrough in 2012 with its Grammy-winning sophomore album "Some Nights."
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