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Sony Considering Sale Of Publishing Division

NEW YORK (VIP NEWS) — Sony Corp. has been considering a sale of its music publishing operation, according to a Bloomberg report on the latest leak of hacked Sony e-mails.

In an email exchange on November 21, the potential sale is labeled as “top secret” and handled by Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton, Sony Corp America president Nicole Seligman and Sony US CFO Steve Kober.

The future of Sony’s music publishing arm was first questioned by Sony Corp CFO Kenichiro Yoshida on October 3 in an email to Sony Corp CEO Kazuo Hirai and Lynton.

Yoshida said: “I’d like to hear your thoughts on the music publishing business, which has rather complex capital and governance structure and is impacted by the market shift to streaming.”

A presentation suggesting that the company was considering a sale was then included in a planning document sent to a number of Sony executives on November 21.

Sony US CFO Steve Kober said in response to the presentation’s inclusion: “We are very surprised that the attached listing includes the comment about the sale of Sony/ATV. As you know quite well, this is a top-secret project that is being handled by me working directly with Michael and Nicole.”

Sony/ATV, along with the EMI Music Publishing catalogue acquired for $2.2bn in 2012, gives Sony an estimated 30% share of the global market.

Publishing accounts for around 14% of Sony’s music revenue.

Sony/ATV is a joint venture between Sony and the Michael Jackson estate.