Sony BMG Wins Merger Appeal At Top EU Court
July 11, 2008 at 5:04 AM (PT)
SONY and BERTELSMANN won a ruling at the EUROPEAN UNION's highest court to throw out a lower tribunal's decision (NET NEWS 7/10) that temporarily jeopardized the formation of their SONY BMG music label, reports THE NEW YORK POST.
The EUROPEAN Court of Justice YESTERDAY sent the case back to the lower court for reconsideration, saying the tribunal made "errors of law" when it decided the EUROPEAN COMMISSION's initial approval of the merger was wrong. The Court of First Instance in 2006 rejected the commission's approval of the SONY BMG deal, which created the world's second-largest record company. EU regulators in OCTOBER approved the SONY BMG merger a second time.
The decision won't have a "real commercial impact" on SONY BMG, said JOHN BOYCE, a lawyer for BERTELSMANN. He said the ruling is important to clarify the EU's merger control process. The case was sent back "because the commission's reasoning wasn't as incoherent" as the Court of First Instance said it was, said lawyer JONAS KOPONEN.
IMPALA, a group of independent labels whose appeal led to the 2006 court veto, challenged the second EU approval of the SONY BMG deal at the Court of First Instance in JUNE. YESTERDAY's ruling was a "surprise," the group said.
Beverly Hills, That's Where They're Gonna Be
SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT has leased CREATIVE ARTISTS AGENCY INC.'s former BEVERLY HILLS headquarters, an I.M. PEI building that has a mural by ROY LICHTENSTEIN in its 57-foot-high atrium, writes THE L.A. TIMES.
The group will move in by the end of the year,
The building at 9830 Wilshire Blvd. has been vacant since JANUARY 2007, after CAA moved into a nearby CENTURY CITY high-rise nicknamed "The Death Star" by gossip website DEFAMER.COM.