Five expected to bid for EMI

The word at the bar is that all four of EMI’s rivals – Universal, Warner, Sony and BMG – will bid for the Citibank-owned label, along with billionaire investor Ronald Perelman, whose motives are rather more obscure.

The four biggies would break up the business and keep the juicy parts. Perelman may just want the juicy publishing part for itself, and discard the record bits.

But this may not be the full pack of cards. A Murdoch bid cannot be discounted and various disgruntled record executives are doing the rounds trying to engineer a buyout. They have until tomorrow morning, LA time, to make their move.

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  • Let us hope the buyer will handle some of the catalogue with care and respect. EMI helped to make history in the XX century.

  • I would feel more at ease if Universal wins the EMI label. Both Universal and EMI have similar long histories with their classical and non-classical recordings. As far as EMI is concerned there are artist overlaps because EMI has recordings by Yundi Li, Karajan, Argerich, Abbado, Ashkenazy, Barenboim and even the King’s College Choir. These artists have recordings on Decca, Philips and DG, and an EMI-Universal combination could bring all their recordings under one roof. Also, the interesting thing I’ve read is that both EMI and DG used the HMV trademark of Nipper the dog at different points in their history. So I’ve felt it might be good for these two labels to tie up. On a personal note I have lately started to be fond of the EMI disc of Celibidache’s take on Sheherazade, and I would like it if Universal were to eventually distribute that recording.

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