Entertainment giant Sony on Tuesday announced a $1.9-billion (roughly Rs. 12,900 crores) deal to acquire EMI Music Publishing, one of the world’s largest music publishing companies. It signed a deal with Mubadala, an Abu Dhabi-based investment firm to buy its 60% holding in EMI, giving the Japanese firm an indirect stake of approximately 90%, Sony said in a statement.
Sony said it expects to pay a total of about $2.3 billion for the majority stake in EMI Music Publishing, which it hopes will strengthen its entertainment portfolio. The other additional $400 million will be paid to existing stakeholders at EMI Music Publishing to make the acquisition possible.
Last month, the electronics and entertainment giant recorded annual profits worth $4.5 billion, a roaring recovery supported by better sales across the board and helped by box office blockbusters like its Jumanji reboot.
EMI is the second-largest music publishing company, thusly holding the rights to 2.1 million pieces of music. It either owns or administers some two million songs, including classics by the likes of Queen, Sam Smith, Pharrell Williams, and Drake.
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As for Sony, it already owns 2.3 million copyrights, including the Beatles catalog. It strategically plans to focus more on content than hardware under the new CEO, Kenichiro Yoshida.
Still, investors did not cheer Sony’s decision to buy EMI Music Publishing as Sony stock gets down around 0.6% in the first few minutes of trade, underperforming the wider Japanese market, which was flat.