Report: Richard Branson Considers Buying Virgin Records Back
July 17, 2012 at 1:22 PM (PT)
If UMG decides to sell off VIRGIN RECORDS in order to get its acquisition of EMI MUSIC approved by the EUROPEAN COMMISSION (NET NEWS, 7/16), it looks like VIRGIN's original owner, RICHARD BRANSON will make a bid for it, BUSINESSWEEK reports. BRANSON, who launched VIRGIN in LONDON in the 1970s, may be bidding fro the label with PATRICK ZELNIK, who started VIRGIN RECORDS in FRANCE in the 1980s and is co-Pres. of independent label group Impala.
"RICHARD BRANSON and VIRGIN have been assessing how to get back into the recorded music business for many years," BRANSON spokesperson NICK FOX said. "The potential disposal of VIRGIN RECORDS by UNIVERSAL MUSIC offers a wonderful opportunity to recreate a dynamic independent label in the market."
Media analyst ALICE ENDERS speculates that "I would consider there’ll be an active bidding war for Virgin Records with interest from private equity and industry insiders like WARNER MUSIC."