Scott Maclachlan, who helped launch Lorde into the international spotlight during his time as her former manager, has been fired from Warner Music after he admitted to sexual harassment.
Machlachlan was hired by Warner Australasia in 2018 as its senior vice president for A&R following his work with Lorde at Saiko Management. As New Zealand publication Stuff reported on Sunday (January 24), within five months of his hiring at Warner, Maclachlan became the subject of an external sexual harassment investigation and was banned from the label’s Australian office. He was also demoted to an A&R specialist in Auckland.
A former employee at Saiko, Amy Goldsmith, also told the publication that Maclachlan sexually harassed and emotionally manipulated her.
“He would insinuate he wanted more (than their professional relationship) he would comment on my body, he would ask whether I wanted to kiss him. Most of the time I just told him to shut up,” Goldsmith said.
Maclachlan admitted to Stuff that Goldsmith’s claims were true, saying he “regrets wholly that intense pressure and responsibility I put on that employee”. Maclachlan also said he had made “stupid, insensitive and ignorant comments” to women in the music industry – including asking them if they wanted sexual contact with him, and making comments about their bodies.
Maclachlan also said he is currently receiving intensive psychotherapy. “I was in a very dark place, considered the employee a confidant and was reaching out for help. I, of course, realise that this was not the correct person to reach out to,” he told Stuff.
“There’s not a day goes by that I don’t regret the harm I have caused people around me and most importantly the pain and embarrassment I have caused my wife and children. I have to live with that guilt, knowing that people I worked with have also endured pain and stress because of my actions.”
In a follow-up report that same day, Stuff reported that Maclachlan’s employment with Warner was terminated.
“We investigated what we believed to be an isolated incident in 2018, with the assistance of an external expert, and we went further than they advised with disciplinary actions,” a Warner spokesperson said.
“Now that we’ve learned about these additional incidents, we’ve terminated Scott Maclachlan’s employment contract with immediate effect.”
NME has reached out to Warner Music Australia for comment.