WEA Inc. CEO David Mount Announces Retirement

Jul 12, 2002, 01:00 ET from Warner Music Group

    NEW YORK, July 12 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Warner Music Group (WMG)
 announced today that David Mount, chairman and chief executive officer of WEA
 Inc., for the past nine years, has decided to retire at the end of 2002. A
 successor to Mount will be named later.
     In making the announcement, Roger Ames, WMG's chairman and CEO said,
 "Dave's outstanding leadership at WEA for nearly a decade has played a
 critical role in the Music Group's success. During his tenure, he built on
 WEA's rich legacy as a distributor, growing WEA into a preeminent
 distribution, manufacturing and packaging company. All of us at the Music
 Group who have admired Dave's professionalism, his sense of humor, his
 commitment to community and his leadership will miss him, and we wish him only
 the best in retirement."
     Mount said, "My years at Warner Music Group and WEA have been the most
 rewarding of my career. The people here are among the hardest working
 professionals I've encountered, and I'm proud to call them my friends as well.
 What success I've had is attributable to them. Running such a complex
 organization, and guiding it through a period of profound change in the
 industry, has required enormous energy and focus, sometimes at the expense of
 the two most important things in life: family and well-being. With that
 thought in mind, I decided earlier this year that I needed to address those
 concerns. My decision to retire from WEA is the result of that process. I want
 to express my gratitude to Roger for accepting that decision with grace, and
 to thank him -- and all my friends and colleagues at WEA and Warner Music
 Group -- for their friendship and support during my years at WEA."
     Mount has led WEA since 1993, when he was appointed president and CEO
 following the departure of the company's former head Henry Droz. For Mount,
 who at the time was the CEO of a publicly traded company, the appointment
 marked a return to the company where he worked earlier in his career, having
 started at WEA as a branch marketing coordinator for the Los Angeles office in
 1977. Under Mount's leadership, WEA has been transformed from a company that
 handled U.S. distribution for Warner Music Group's labels-Warner Bros.,
 Elektra and Atlantic-to a multifaceted organization that today facilitates the
 operation of three WMG companies: WEA Corp., WMG's U.S. distribution, sales
 and retail marketing arm; WEA Manufacturing, among the world's largest
 manufacturers of CDs and DVDs; and Ivy Hill, an award-winning packaging and
 design firm.  Mount seamlessly integrated the three businesses, refocusing the
 organization and successfully implementing state-of-the-art supply chain
 management, and instituted an aggressive sales approach with the formation of
 Warner Media Services to focus on developing new business outside of WMG's
 companies. The effect was dramatically upgraded manufacturing and delivery
 capability and significant profit improvements for WMG.
     In addition, Mount oversaw the creation of Warner Strategic Marketing, a
 new WMG division organized to exploit the vast WMG music and video catalog in
 the U.S., developing new catalog-related business opportunities across AOL
 Time Warner and with third party companies.  The division, which includes
 Rhino Entertainment, Warner Special Products and Warner Commercial Marketing,
 also handles soundtrack, video and direct marketing initiatives for WMG
     Mount also supervised the development of WMG's Alternative Distribution
 Alliance, one of the leading distributors of independent label recordings in
 the U.S.
     Prior to rejoining WEA, Mount served as president and CEO of LIVE
 Entertainment Inc. At LIVE, Mount restructured the company's public debt,
 improved the company's balance sheet and rebuilt the management team. In his
 five years at LIVE, he compiled an outstanding record of success among
 divisions he managed, including LIVE Specialty Retail (Strawberries) and LIVE
 Home Video.
     In his first tenure at WEA, Mount was promoted from the Los Angeles branch
 marketing coordinator to field sales manager, and, over the next seven years,
 moved up to regional sales manager and became the company's first vice
 president of video sales and distribution. In 1984, he assumed the same
 position as vice president of sales and distribution at Warner Home Video
 before moving to LIVE Home Video in 1988 as president.
     Mount also serves as chairman of the executive committee of the Board of
 Visitors of Pepperdine University and is a national trustee for the Cystic
 Fibrosis Foundation. He has received numerous awards from organizations
 including The Video Industry AIDS Action Committee (VIAAC), National
 Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Cystic Fibrosis
 Foundation, Break the Cycle and Heroes and Legends (HAL) among others, and is
 a member of the Video Hall Of Fame. Mount received his B.A. from the
 University of Nebraska and his M.B.A. from Pepperdine University.
     About WEA Inc.
     WEA Inc., Warner Music Group's manufacturing and distribution operation,
 is comprised of three companies: WEA Corp., a leading U.S. distribution
 company; WEA Manufacturing, one of the world's largest CD and DVD
 manufacturers; and Ivy Hill, an award-winning design and packaging firm.
     About Warner Music Group
     Warner Music Group is home to some of the world's leading record
 companies, including The Atlantic Group, Elektra Entertainment Group, Rhino
 Entertainment, Warner Bros. Records Inc. and Word Entertainment. The company's
 Warner Music International, with a roster of more than 1,000 artists, operates
 in more than 70 countries through various subsidiaries, affiliates and
 non-affiliated licensees. Warner Music Group also includes one of the world's
 leading music and print music publishers, Warner/Chappell, and WEA Inc., which
 is composed of three companies, WEA Corp., WEA Manufacturing, and Ivy Hill.
 Warner Music Group is an AOL Time Warner company. For more information about
 Warner Music Group visit our corporate site at http://www.wmg.com
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SOURCE Warner Music Group