Tuesday, December 14, 2010

EMI Headed To Citigroup; Will Warner Step In?

In the wake of Terra Firma's failed lawsuit against Citigroup, the private equity firm appears ready to surrender the smallest major label, EMI, to the bank, according to the Post. Hypebot speculates that the transfer could come as early as Christmas. While EMI's finances have actually improved over recent years, Terra Firma looks unwilling to invest the another £200 million by next June to retain control.

Citigroup isn't particularly known for its love of music, and the bank's next probable move would be to liquidate the record company, which has a lucrative back catalogue. A month ago, it was reported that Warner Music would make a $750 million bid, although EMI CEO Robert Faxton wrote at the time that a move would be "utterly idiotic" and devalue the label's long-term health. Sadly, Citigroup's goal isn't to keep EMI healthy - it's to get rid of it for as much money as possible.

Hopefully, something good will come out of this mess.

(Disclosure: I interned at Astralwerks, an EMI-owned label, over the summer of 2008. There were layoffs.)

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