X Factor 2010 winner Matt Cardle has reportedly parted company with his record label just months after his debut album Letters was released.
The former painter and decorator triumphed over fellow finalists Rebecca Ferguson, One Direction and Cher Lloyd in the 2010 series, and was immediately signed up to a joint deal between Simon Cowell’s Syco and Columbia Records.
However the People reports that the label did not renew his contract when it expired, claiming disappointing sales of his debut album.
Letters entered the charts at number two when it was released, while his debut single When We Collide topped the singles charts – but the follow-up, Run For Your Life, peaked at number six, and the follow-up, Starlight, only made it to 185.
The paper reports that Matt is now “hoping to take his career in a different direction,” while a source added, “Everyone wishes him well.”
There is also speculation that 2011 runner-up Marcus Collins could also be about to be dropped from the Syco label.
The Liverpool-born singer, who finished second to Little Mix in the final in December, released his debut album in March, reaching number seven in the charts – while his debut single, a cover version of the White Stripes’ Seven Nation Army, made it to number nine.
A source told the Daily Star that Marcus’ album sales had been “disappointing” and added, “No-one expected him to flop but he’s one of the most unsuccessful runners-up in the show’s history.
“He has to pull it out of the bag with the second single. If that bombs, there’s unlikely to be a third.”