BRUSSELS, Belgium (CelebrityAccess) — In the wake of the news that Sony/ATV plans to acquire the lion’s share of EMI’s music publishing, Impala, the Independent Music Companies Association, has called upon European Union regulators to evaluate the potential monopolistic ramifications of the deal.
“The European Commission will want to avoid reinforcing the Sony/Universal duopoly, the two horse race which started in 2012 with the sale of EMI. This is a step too far and I would expect to see an in-depth investigation in the EU and other key jurisdictions,” Impala’s Executive Chair Helen Smith said in a press statement after the announcement of the planned acquisition.
The deal, announced on May 22nd, would see Sony acquire a 60% stake in EMI from the Abu Dhabi-based Mubadala Investment Company, raising Sony’s total holdings in EMI to 90%, with the remaining 10% owned by the Jackson Estate.
The deal, if it completes, would give Sony near complete control over EMI’s music from contemporary artists such as Kanye, Drake, Pink, Pharrell Williams, as well as a deep catalog of classic rock and pop, including material from artists such as Queen and Carole King. Collectively, Sony’s publishing would own or administer more than 2.3 million copyrights.
“Today, Sony is already by far the world’s largest music publisher and an indispensable trading partner controlling over 2.3 million copyrights. If this sale was to happen, its market power would be reinforced with serious competition issues, including excessive bargaining power when negotiating with collecting societies and the authors they represent, as well as other actors in the value chains such as labels and online services,” Smith added.