46_Warner Music Group

Yes, it's a distant number two to Universal Music in total sales, and both labels are suffering revenue drops. But at Warner Music, the drops are small, on the order of 2% to 3%—and the company seems to have found a model for the future. Digital sales were up 39% last year (more than Universal's), thanks in part to an MP3 effort launched in late 2007 that really got ramped up in 2008.

Warner was aggressive with music social networks, including MySpace Music and an investment in iMeem, plus it partnered with Nokia to create an all-access music channel that lives on your phone for as long as you have it. Warner has also restructured the way it signs artists, turning itself into something like a venture capitalist for musicians.

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