Will Sony Team With BMG To Buy Warner Music Group?
March 24, 2011 at 4:01 AM (PT)
The positioning to buy WARNER MUSIC GROUP continues to have daily surprises. ALL ACCESS has reported two weeks ago, that at least five groups have been told they are through to the second round of the auction for all or parts of WARNER MUSIC GROUP, including PLATINUM EQUITY, RON BURKLE's YUCAIPA COMPANIES, LEN BLAVATNIK's ACCESS INDUSTRIES, SONY MUSIC and BMG MUSIC PUBLISHING.
TUESDAY (NET NEWS 3/22), two new bids emerged for WMG. TAMARES, a private investment group with assets ranging from property to digital media, has bid for the whole company, according to three people familiar with the negotiations, while BMG MUSIC PUBLISHING, backed by KOHLBERG KRAVIS ROBERTS and BERTELSMANN, has revised the terms of its earlier offer.
Now comes a report from THE FINANCIAL TIMES that, "SONY and BMG RIGHTS MANAGEMENT could team up in order to buy WARNER MUSIC GROUP, as the deadline towards the sale of the major nears. Although BMG -- a joint venture between private equity firms KKR and BERTELSMANN -- is more interested in acquiring WARNER's publishing arm WARNER/CHAPPELL, the company has reportedly been in talks with SONY about the possibility of the organization taking over the recorded music side of the business."
The report notes that SONY would be likely to face antitrust issues, given its 28.4% market share, although those figures include both music and publishing.