So much has happened in the business lately that I thought it would be a good idea to give credit to those who have excelled in entertaining us…an acknowledgement of sorts to the biggest bonehead of the month. To that end we have created the Fredo Corleone Award, or The Fredo for short, and it will be awarded to the most moronic figure of the month culminating in an annual kudo to the most consistently moronic person of the year. Criteria for judging includes, but is not limited to, stupid public statements, idiotic business moves, undeserved self-importance, and overall dull wittedness. Clearly there’s a lot of competition for the title.
So let’s get started with this month’s nominees:
Guy Hands: This is an obvious choice as he has clearly met and exceeded all of the criteria, enough so to deserve a Fredo Lifetime Achievement Award. Enjoyable punching bag that he is, Guy made a couple of truly stupid comments this last week at an investor’s conference in Paris. Specifically he said that he and Terra Firma would “look like geniuses” if they hadn’t bought EMI. “EMI is where EMI is,” he added. And if he had been born without a penis he may have been Maria Callas.
Rob Stringer: In an extensive piece in The Hollywood Reporter documenting the Amanda Ghost/Epic Records debacle, Stringer comes off as a complete nitwit, oddly defending Ghost while at the same time trying to distance himself. ”I’m the first to admit that I made an experimental judgment that possibly wasn’t fair on Amanda. She struck me as a tour de force and a creative whirlwind — which the industry needs more of — and she was very keen to do the job and super-excited and confident about it. But in the last few weeks, we both agreed it was too big a mountain to climb.” The article goes on to describe Ghost’s behavior as nothing less than ghastly; even her routine of casually chain-smoking cigarettes and weed in her office. At any company in the world the human resources department would be all over this, but curiously the head of HR at Sony is another Brit crony brought in by Stringer. Acting as Ghost’s apologist, Stringer goes on to say “Calling her abrasive could mean she’s not afraid of confrontation.” What he doesn’t admit to is how his decision (as well as his decision to hire Rick Rubin) was not only fiscally irresponsible and devastating to the artistic growth of the label, but also how this bright idea wrought havoc in the lives of dozens of label employees and their livelihoods.
Junior Bronfman: A perennial All-Star, Junior never fails to disappoint. The disingenuousness he displayed in last week’s earnings call regarding Warner’s dealings with the pioneering music service Spotify bordered on sheer art. After doing everything he could to block Spotify’s entry into the US market in a rather public Mexican standoff, Junior blinked and renewed WMG’s European deals with the start-up. In an attempt to paint himself as a digital visionary, Junior told reporters on the call “We’re pleased with the new agreement because we’ve long seen great promise in Spotify”. Way to go Nostrodamus!
Who is the eXec Factor Moron of the Month?
- Guy Hands (40%, 19 Votes)
- Rob Stringer (33%, 16 Votes)
- Edgar Bronfman Junior (27%, 13 Votes)
Total Voters: 48
TMV have decided to make this a reader’s vote each month. As such please make your vote from the candidates provided above. The poll will be live for 1 week from today. And we will announce the winner in next week’s newsletter along with the number of votes for each candidate. For suggestions on future candidates for our monthly eXec Factor Moron of The Month Award please email: firstname.lastname@example.org