NEW YORK (Reuters) - Latin pop star and actor Enrique Iglesias on Wednesday sued Universal Music Group in the United States, claiming that his former label short-changed him out of millions of dollars of streaming royalties.
In a complaint filed with a court in Manhattan, he said Universal had paid only a "small fraction" of the 50 per cent royalty rate for streamed music that his contract required.
His lawyer said Universal had wrongly insisted that recording artists be paid for streams in the same way they are paid for album sales, despite the absence of similar costs for production, distribution and other overheads.
Iglesias, 42, began his recording career in 1995, and according to the complaint, has sold more than 100 million albums and generated billions of streams.
Universal became his home label in 1999, and he remained there until departing for Sony Music in 2015.
Though streaming did not exist in 1999, Iglesias said his contract, which was modified in 2010, called for the 50 per cent royalty rate "for any type of use not specifically covered" by its terms.