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Sony May Buy Out Bertelsmann Stake

LONDON (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Sony Corp. and Bertelsmann AG have reportedly begun discussions regarding the possibility of Sony buying part or all of Bertelsmann’s 50 percent stake in Sony BMG, the world’s second-largest recorded-music company by revenue.

The Wall Street Journal reported that people familiar with the situation said the two companies could reach an arrangement to extract cash from the venture by taking on debt.

The 50 percent stake held by Bertelsmann could be worth as much as $2.5 billion.

Bertelsmann spokesman Andreas Grafemeyer said in a statement that the company “has no intention to sell its 50 percent stake in Sony BMG,” while Sony declined comment, according to the paper.

Bertelsmann is exploring the possibility of Sony buying either all or part of Bertelsmann’s half of the music company, or restructuring the partnership to generate a substantial amount of cash quickly. An agreement could reportedly come within weeks, although sources say talks may not hold up. –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers