“The X Factor” executive producer Simon Cowell is No. 100 on Billboard magazine’s first Power 100 list, which ranks powerful people in the U.S. music industry, based on revenue, market share and Billboard chart performances in the past year.
Meanwhile, Epic Records chairman/CEO Antonio “L.A.” Reid is No. 37 on the list.
Cowell and Reid are both judges on “The X Factor” U.S.
Billboard editors compiled the list, which is likely to be an annual list.
The entire list is available on Billboard.biz and in Billboard’s issue that is available on newsstands on January 30, 2012.
Some people may be wondering why Cowell didn’t rank higher on the list. It’s probably because none of the acts from “The X Factor” U.S. had any hits on Billboard’s charts in 2011. (The show’s first season aired from September to December 2011.) “The X Factor” also isn’t as highly rated as “American Idol,” so the smaller audience for “The X Factor” U.S. means the show has less influence in the music industry than “American Idol” does.
However, Cowell’s Syco Music did have success in 2011 on the U.S. charts with former “Britain’s Got Talent” finalist Susan Boyle and former “America’s Got Talent” finalist Jackie Evancho. Cowell co-owns Syco Music with Sony Music.
As chairman/CEO of Epic Records, Reid ranks higher than Cowell on the list because Reid oversees the music releases of several major artists, including Michael Jackson, Shakira, Celina Dion and Ozzy Osbourne. Reid has also signed these former “X Factor” contestants whose first Epic Records albums will be released in the U.S. in 2012:
- Melanie Amaro, 19, winner of “The X Factor” U.S. in 2011 (Syco and Epic are partnered to release Amaro’s music.)
- Chris Rene, 29, who came in third place on “The Factor” U.S. in 2011
- Marcus Canty, 21, who came in fourth place on “The Factor” U.S. in 2011
- Astro, 15, who came in seventh place on “The Factor” U.S. in 2011
- Cher Lloyd, 18, who came in fourth place on “The X Factor” U.K. in 2010
On Billboard’s first Power 100 list, Live Nation Entertainment chairman Irving Azoff was ranked No. 1, followed by Red Light Management founder Coran Capshaw at No. 2, and Universal Music Group chairman/CEO Lucian Grainge at No. 3.
Azoff’s Front Line Management Group (which is part of Live Nation) has a deal with “The X Factor” U.S. to represent the winners and a select number of finalists from the show.
There are also other people on Billboard’s Power 100 list who are high-ranking executives at the record companies that have signed “X Factor” contestants. These executives include
- At No. 5 on the list: Doug Morris, CEO of Sony Music, which is partnered with “The X Factor” to sign winners from the show. Sony Music is the parent company/distributor of the labels Epic Records, Columbia Records, RCA Records, Syco Music and more.
- At No. 19 on the list: Rob Stringer, chairman/CEO of Columbia Records, and Steve Barnett, chairman/COO of Columbia Records. Syco and Columbia have partnered to release One Direction’s music in the United States. One Direction came in third place on “The X Factor” U.K. in 2010.
- At No. 41 on the list: Peter Edge, CEO of RCA Music Group, and Tom Corson, president/COO of RCA Music Group. RCA Music Group is the U.S. record company of Leona Lewis (winner of “The X Factor” U.K. in 2006) and JLS, the male quartet that came in second place on “The X Factor” U.K. in 2008.
Artists who are on Billboard’s first Power 100 list include spouses Beyoncé and Jay-Z, who both ranked at No. 13; U2 (along with U2 manager Paul McGuinness) at No. 27; Jon Bon Jovi at No. 50; Taylor Swift at No. 78; and Lady Gaga at No. 84.