UPDATED: YouTube and Universal Music Group to form VEVO music and video site

San Bruno (CA) – Apparently YouTube and Universal Music Group were not able to come to a deal sufficient enough to keep video content on the existing YouTube website, and are instead opting to create a new Vevo.com website where the two partners will share ad revenue, and offer a Click-to-Buy ability for music and videos.

Universal Music Group’s channel is the most viewed on YouTube today, with over 3.5 billion video views and 25 million channel views, indicating they have some pull over YouTube (and apparently Google). Universal and YouTube came to strategic content agreements as far back as 2006, when they announced their first partnership.

The new site was announced today, and will include the entire catalog of music videos from Universal, a division of France’s Vivendi SA, and represents the world’s largest recording company. A new click-to-buy feature will enable videos to be purchased immediately from the site, which is probably the biggest reason it was not incorporated into YouTube’s existing design — though YouTube also offers Click-to-Buy, now in eight more countries.

Universal Music Group has published 25 new videos this week alone, and their channel has over 9,450 videos. As of the time of this writing, the Vevo website is not yet active. However, you can submit your email and sign up for email information and status updates. Also, the site already has a following on Twitter.

See YouTube’s press release.

UPDATED:  April 10, 2009 – 06:10am CDT
YouTube has posted some additional details about the site:

Today we are joining forces with Universal Music Group (UMG) to announce the launch of VEVO, a music and video entertainment hub that will feature UMG’s premium video content. This service will blend UMG’s broad catalog of artists and content production capabilities with our video technology and user community — in other words, we’ll provide the technology infrastructure that will power VEVO and host UMG’s extensive library of professionally-created music videos on the new site. This content will be exclusively available through VEVO.com and a new VEVO channel on YouTube through a special VEVO branded embedded player. It launches later this year. 

We’re hopeful that this partnership will set a positive example of how the digital and music industries can work together. Moreover, VEVO gives users a deeper, more immersive music experience. As part of the agreement, we’ve renewed and extended our deal with UMG to allow users to continue creating and watching videos containing UMG sound recordings and Universal Music Publishing Group’s compositions in various territories around the world. You’ll even be able to buy favorite tracks on the spot with our Click-to-Buy feature. 

Chris Maxcy
Partnerships Director
The YouTube Team