Universal announces long-term deal with ‘once-in-a-generation’ talent The Weeknd

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Universal Music has extended its long-term deal with The Weeknd, which will see the company manage his entire music catalogue, merchandise and audio-visual projects.

The R&B superstar, whose real name is Abel Tesfaye, has previously produced chart-topping albums including 2020’s After Hours.

His breakout single Blinding Lights holds the record for the longest-charting song in Billboard history.

Universal Music Group (UMG), home of Republic Records, has been The Weeknd’s partner since 2012 and will remain his label partner for the future, administering all his future works and songwriting catalogue following the expiration of his existing deal.

Bravado, UMG’s brand-management and merchandise company, will continue to work closely with The Weeknd to expand and develop global merchandising, branding, ecommerce and retail licensing opportunities around future projects and releases.

Similarly, the new agreement covers future audio-visual projects in collaboration with Republic Records and UMG.

In making the announcement, Sir Lucian Grainge – chairman of UMG – said he was “delighted” to expand their “special relationship.”

He said: “Over the past decade, we have been honoured to work so closely with Abel who has quickly become one of music’s most creative and important artists, a once-in-a-generation talent.

“We’ve developed a deep trust and respect that has enabled us to successfully execute Abel’s brilliant vision.”

Monte Lipman, chairman of Republic Records, added it is an “honour” to be involved in the “evolution of The Weeknd”.

He said: “Abel is the consummate 21st century artist and global superstar who continues to break down creative barriers with his genre-bending repertoire.

“His success and career-defining accomplishments have made a historic impact around the world.”

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