SBK Records

SBK Records
Parent company Universal Music Group
Founded 1988
Founder Stephen Swid, Martin Bandier, and Charles Koppelman
Status Defunct
Distributor(s) Capitol Music Group
Genre Various
Country of origin United States

SBK Records was a record label, owned by Universal Music Group, that is currently part of the Capitol Music Group, where it is in hibernation. The label was founded in 1988 and during its time in activity existed as part of the EMI Group.


Stephen Swid, Martin Bandier and Charles Koppelman formed SBK Entertainment in 1989 after they purchased the music publishing division of CBS Records, CBS Songs, in 1986 for $125 million.[1] The name is an acronym incorporating the first letter of the founders' surnames.

The partners sold the company to EMI Music Publishing (for a reported US$295 million), and launched SBK Records. It was distributed through the short-lived EMI Records Group North America, or ERG. In 1989, Daniel Glass joined SBK as Senior Vice President of Promotion. In 1990, Glass was promoted to Executive Vice President/General Manager. With the consolidation of SBK, Chrysalis, Wild Pitch and EMI Records USA several years later into EMI Records Group North America, he rose to President-CEO.

The label had several hits with Vanilla Ice, Jesus Jones, Boy George, Wilson Phillips, Jon Secada, Ya Kid K, McQueen Street,[2] Technotronic, Blur, Billy Dean and Everyday People.

SBK Records was part of the EMI Group, but became dormant as of 2007, when Martin Bandier left EMI Publishing for Sony Corp.'s Sony/ATV Music Publishing. EMI was sold in 2012 to two different entities and split up.

SBK also signed the first Latino MC to a major label, Ray Roll, from the famed Rock Steady Crew, and Selena, the first female crossover Latin artist.

The 1994 album The Divine Comedy by Milla Jovovich was released through SBK and was critically acclaimed. The album is still in print since its release.

The company's music publishing catalog is now controlled by Sony/ATV Music Publishing,[3] and the recorded music catalog is now controlled by Universal Music Group.

See also


  1. "CBS Records to Buy Tree, Ending an Era in Nashville". New York Times. January 4, 1989. Retrieved 2012-08-29. CBS Songs, the record company's publishing arm, was sold in 1986 for $125 million to Stephen Swid, Martin Bandier and Charles Koppelman, who renamed it SBK Entertainment. It is now the second-largest music publishing company.
  2. "LOS ANGELES MUSIC AWARDS HISTORY AND PRESTIGE". LA Music Awards. 2010-08-22. Retrieved 2010-08-22.
  3. Ed Christman (11 November 2011). "It's Official: Sony-Led Group Purchases EMI Music Publishing for $2.2 Billion". News / Publishing. Billboard. Retrieved June 17, 2015.
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