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Congressional Sub-Committee To Hold Hearings On Universal-EMI Deal

WASHINGTON, D.C. (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Live Nation's Irving Azoff, as well as EMI's Roger Faxon and Universal's Lucian Grange are set to testify before a congressional antitrust sub-committee in favor of the proposed purchase of EMI by Universal.

The proposed deal, worth $1.9 billion, has sparked controversy in both Europe and the U.S. with critics suggesting that the deal will leave Universal with a near monopoly on recorded music. Democratic senator Herb Kohl announced in May that the anti-trust sub-committee would hold hearings on the matter, despite not having any statutory authority over federal regulators.

In Europe, the deal is under review by the Competition Commission, which is poised to release a list of objections that may require concessions from Universal before the deal can be approved.

Witnesses testifying against the deal include former chairman & CEO Edgar Bronfman Jr., Beggars Group chairman Martin Mills and digital rights lobbyist Gigi Sohn. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers