Simon Cowell

Since my blogs have been focused on X Factor, it’s only fitting to write about the man behind the show.

Simon Cowell’s earnings as of May 2012, according to Forbes was $90 million! That makes him 9th in the money rankings, behind heavyweights like Oprah at no. 1, Michael Bay at 2, Steven Spielberg at 3, Jerry Bruckheimer at 4, Dr. Dre at 5, Tyler Perry at 6, Howard Stern at 7, and James Patterson at 8. What surprised me was that he is ahead of people like George Lucas and Donald Trump. I knew Simon had money but I didn’t think he was up in the top 10! He comes in at no. 18 on the celebrity 100, no.19 in TV/ radio, 28 in press, 79 in social and 84 in web.

Simon got his break into the music industry as an A&R through his dad’s connections (his dad was a music industry executive at EMI). He has created his wealth through television mainly. His time as a judge on American Idol helped him break into the US where he was known for his bluntness and insults. He started his X Factor franchise which has spread across the world and has signed chart-topping acts such as Leona Lewis and One Direction. His other show Britain’s Got Talent has generated other Got Talent shows and the show found acts like Susan Boyle who made a global impact. He also has numerous other shows. All of the acts from his shows are signed to his label Syco which is affiliated with Sony BMG.

Simon Cowell can smell money from a mile away. Where he sees an opportunity he jumps right in and makes a “killing.” He milks that particular project (or cow) until there is absolutely nothing left (e.g. X Factor UK, it really is dying). His most recent project is the Sony X headphones, yes, Simon Cowell has turned his hand to the consumer electronic market. This range of headphones has been seen at every possible opportunity during the X Factor USA shows and they are the official headphone partners of the talent show. His reason for making headphones is simply because he wanted something better than what is in the market today, as if there aren’t enough celebrities making headphones!

Another deal that he stuck is the partnership with Pepsi. Pepsi recently announced that it will be offering the X Factor USA winner a $5million Syco record deal AND a Grammy ad video!! This video will debut during the 2013 Grammy Awards which is the perfect opportunity to launch an artist’s career, on one of the biggest nights in the music calendar. Last years winner (Melanie Amaro) starred in a Pepsi commercial for the Super Bowl which was big but this is not only big but better as it’s music’s biggest night and introduces you to the whose who in music. Pepsi is one of music’s most powerful brands second only to Coca-Cola on Billboard’s 2012 Maximum Exposure chart which ranks the 75 most effective platforms in music discovery (something I will be writing about in my next blog). Pepsi have invested $60 million in X Factor marketing support alone.

Although X Factor UK numbers are dwindling week by week, his American version has been renewed for another season by Fox. It looks like Simon will be laughing all the way to the bank for a few more years.




X Factor is back…actually it’s been back a while

This is just a little preview of what we can expect on this season of X Factor.

So last week I was blogging about Megabox, Kim dotcom and dinosaurs but I decided to change my topic to something that I love to watch.

So X factor is back! It’s been back a while but only got round to watching it this week.

Auditions got me thinking, how much money is Simon Cowell making from all this? Are these “talent shows” here to stay? What about the survival of these artists in the music industry? I mean look at One Direction, they’re currently battling it out with Rihanna for the UK iTunes #1 spot! According to Music Week, by the end of Tuesday only 246 sales separated One Direction’s “Live While We’re Young” and Rihanna’s “Diamonds”, according to Official Charts Company data, with the boy band in front. Both tracks have topped 50,000 sales in their opening week and look like reaching 100,000 units by the time the final chart is published on Sunday. News like this must have Simon laughing all the way to the bank. But then there is the little issue of Adele releasing the theme song for the new 007 James Bond film so that might just put a damper on One Directions hopes of scoring their second UK #1.

What about the US version of X factor which now has Britney Spears as a judge?! But where did last years amazing winner Melanie Amaro go? She won a $5 million recording contract with Syco and Sony which is the biggest EVER guaranteed prize in television history as well as being in a Pepsi ad that was aired during the Super Bowl on NBC! Does it get any bigger than that? What happened to the likes of Chris Rene and Josh Krajcik? And who can forget Astro go? Jay Z supposedly signed him! Maybe it’ll take a while to pick up in the States, cause on this side of the Atlantic, Simon says and it happens.