EMI to remain a member of trade body IFPI

LONDON (Reuters) - British music major EMI will remain a member of international trade body IFPI after both sides agreed to reduce the amount the London-based label and others pay towards the fight against piracy.

A source familiar with the situation told Reuters last year EMI wanted to cut its funding to the industry’s trade bodies as part of its drive to reduce costs under its new private equity owners.

But analysts had said any significant cut in funding to groups such as the IFPI, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) and other national associations could hamper the fight against Internet piracy.

A spokesman for the IFPI, which also looks to safeguard the rights of record producers and expand the commercial use of music, said it had agreed a “sensible, appropriate and reasonable reduction in our budget.”

Like all music groups, EMI has been hit by online piracy and falling CD sales, prompting it to cut around a third of its staff. It was taken over by private equity group Terra Firma last year.

“We undertook to work with our colleagues in the other major labels and with (IFPI boss) John Kennedy on a cost saving plan for the IFPI,” said Jean-Francois Cecillon, president of EMI Music International Labels.

“Together we have been able to find solutions which we believe are achievable whilst maintaining what the IFPI does best in representing our industry.”

Reporting by Kate Holton; Editing by David Holmes