UMG’s Sir Lucian Grainge Hospitalized With COVID-19 In Los Angeles

Lucian Grainge
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UMG Chairmain/CEO Lucian Grainge

Universal Music Group Chairman and CEO Lucian Grainge has tested positive for COVID-19 and is being treated at UCLA’s Ronald Reagan Medical Center just more than two weeks after being feted Feb. 29 at a 60th birthday party in Palm Springs, Calif., attended by power players from the music and tech worlds.

The novel coronavirus has already wreaked havoc on the live side of the international music business, with emergency declarations limiting gatherings to as few as 50 per event in many states and major cities, and companies including Live Nation and AEG voluntarily pressing pause on touring operations for at least the remainder of March.

Centers for Disease Control guidance released March 15 recommends a nationwide moratorium on public gatherings of more than 50 persons. While the guidance isn’t mandatory, it’s hoped that most businesses will comply.

The birthday party for Grainge took place at the Mirage Club at La Quinta golf resort in the Palm Springs area, which is now reportedly closed, according to Variety, which first reported the story. The Santa Monica, Calif., offices of UMG have been closed since Friday, when it was reported an employee – now believed to be Grainge – tested positive for COVID-19 exposure.

According to Variety, the office was nearly empty already with most employees opting t work from home and the office was previously scheduled to close this week because of the viral outbreak.

Grainge has been UMG chairman and CEO since 2011, after moving up the ranks since joining the company in 1986 to head the company’s PolyGram Music Publishing UK. Soon after taking the helm at UMG, the company acquired EMI’s recorded music divison that, with artists including The Beatles and Katy Perry, created the world’s largest recorded music company.

UMG was recently valued at $33.6 billion, and recently sold a 10% stake to Chinese giant Tencent, according to Variety. It remains the world’s largest music company with Capitol, Def Jam, Interscope-Geffen-A&M, Island and Republic labels under its massive umbrella.