Why Did Doug Choose Sony Over Apple?

In 2011, Doug Morris made the decision to depart as the Chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group for various reasons. Under the mentorship and guidance of Doug was his successor, Lucian Grainge. Lucian was appointed as the Chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group in March of 2011. When Doug spoke at Oxford University’s Saïd Business School in 2013, he mentioned that he was met with two job opportunities when making the decision to leave UMG. One offer was from Sir Howard Stringer, who at the time was the Chairman and CEO at Sony Corporation. Another offer was from a guy over at Apple by the name of Steve Jobs.

Steve wanted to bring Doug on board to open up a “Digital Record Company.” By the look of things today, it may have been Apple Music. Instead, Doug made the decision to become CEO over at Sony Music Entertainment. Steve was not very pleased. At the time, many people may have thought, why would Doug choose Sony over Apple? However, here is the part that I particular find to be very interesting. One of Doug’s very close friends is Jimmy Iovine. For those of you who may not know, Jimmy Iovine is a long-term record man and former chairman of Universal Music Group’s Interscope, Geffen, and A&M records division. He’s also the co-founder of Beats by Dre which was acquired by Apple last year. Jimmy is now an important part of the Apple team. Although his exact title is yet to be disclosed, we do know that he occupies an important space in a very influential capacity.

I would be curious to know:

  • What role did Doug play in any of the “behind closed door” conversations between Apple, Beats, and Jimmy Iovine?
  • Was Doug aware of Apple’s interest in purchasing Beats?
  • How likely is it that Doug may decide to make a move over to Apple Music?

These are all questions that I find to be quite intriguing. I guess we’ll see what the future has in store!


(Uh • Kway • Us) Aquaus Kelley is a forward-thinking Creative Consultant, Educator, and Music Publisher. As the Founder of A Lovers Ambition Lifestyle Group, he specializes in identifying talent and creating opportunities for brand development, exposure, and growth. Aquaus has worked with companies such as Cornerstone Agency, Universal Music Group, and W Hotels. He is extremely passionate about helping companies adapt to culture and building value between brands and consumers. His ultimate mission is to use his influence to project positivity across the globe and raise awareness to help uplift the condition of humanity.

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