EU Signs Off On Sony's EMI Publishing Deal
April 19, 2012 at 11:06 AM (PT)
The EUROPEAN UNION has just approved a SONY-led consortium's purchase of EMI PUBLISHING for $2.2 billion, REUTERS reports. SONY, with BLACKSTONE GROUP, DAVID GEFFEN and ABU DHABI's MUBADALA DEVELOPMENT CO. RAINE GROUP, won the bidding for EMI PUBLISHING last year.
The EU approved the deal after the consortium promised to sell the rights to the VIRGIN U.K., VIRGIN EUROPE, VIRGIN U.S. and FAMOUS MUSIC U.K. back-catalogs, as well as the musical works of 12 artists, including LENNY KRAVITZ, ROBBIE WILLIAMS, OZZY OSBOURNE, BEN HARPER, PLACEBO, GARY BARLOW and THE KOOKS. The catalogs are expected to be auctioned off in the coming months,
"SONY and MUBADALA have offered to divest valuable and attractive catalogs containing best-selling titles as well as works of successful and promising authors," EU Commissioner for Competition Issues JOAQUIN ALMUNIA said. "I am therefore satisfied that the competitive dynamics in the online music publishing business will be maintained so as to ensure consumer choice and cultural diversity."
European indie label trade association IMPALA lobbied the EU regulator to veto the deal because it would give SONY excessive power and result in an overly concentrated market.