Universal Music Group (UMG) has announced Ethiopia Habtemariam, who has served as President of Motown since 2014, has been promoted to Chairman and CEO of the label. She will report directly to UMG Chairman and CEO Sir Lucian Grainge.

Visit streaming.thesource.com for more information

With the promotion, Motown will have greater creative and commercial independence to advance its groundbreaking mission of artistic, social and entrepreneurial empowerment — giving voice to the sound of youth culture for more than six decades.

Sir Lucian Grainge said, “Motown is such an important voice and, just as when it was founded by Berry Gordy, its impact continues to be felt around the world. Motown’s resurgence and powerful partnerships under Ethiopia’s leadership has advanced the label’s legacy as home to some of today’s biggest hitmakers and most meaningful voices in music.”


Since joining Motown, Habtemariam oversaw the label’s relocation to Los Angeles and its resurgence. During her leadership, Motown has continued it’s tradition of artist development and forging dynamic partnerships with creative and entrepreneurial entities including Atlanta-based Quality Control Music (QC).

Habtemariam said, “It’s an incredible honor to represent and define what Motown is today. I’ve always understood the power of music and the responsibility I have, not only to continue to be an advocate for artists and creators, but to forge new paths for entrepreneurs and to lift up our next generation of executives around the world. I’d like to thank Lucian for his constant support and guidance over the years; my Motown team for all they have done and continue to do; the Capitol team for their help in building Motown over these past six years; Clarence Avant who has always taught me about the power of responsibility; and to Mr. Berry Gordy, for his faith in me to carry on his legacy.”

Habtemariam called in to Greg Street on V-103 and spoke to the moment.

“It’s a little surreal to be completely honest with you, but it has been a lot of hard work along the way and incredible people that have been in my life,” Habtemariam told Street. “You’ve always been there giving me encouragement and inspiration since I was a kid.”

You can hear the full check in with Greg Street here.