October 22, 2018 / 9:08 AM / a month ago

Sony makes no concessions to EU regulators in EMI music bid

FILE PHOTO: Sony Corp's new President and Chief Executive Officer Kenichiro Yoshida attends a news conference on their business plan at the company's headquarters in Tokyo, Japan May 22, 2018. REUTERS/Toru Hanai/File Photo

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Sony Corp (6758.T) has not offered concessions to European Union antitrust regulators reviewing its $2.3 billion offer for control of EMI to become the world’s largest music publisher, the European Commission website showed on Monday.

EU antitrust regulators earlier this month asked rivals and users whether they think the Japanese group would use its greater market power to win better terms in digital media deals.

The deadline for proposed concessions in the European Commission’s preliminary assessment of the deal was Oct. 19. The EU executive’s website showed that Sony had not submitted any.

This could either mean Sony expects unconditional approval or for the Commission to open a full-scale investigation on Oct. 26 at the end of its review.

Sony, which owns a 30 percent stake in EMI, wants to buy Mubadala Investment Co’s 60 percent stake. In July, it acquired the estate of Michael Jackson’s minority share of EMI.

Sony’s new CEO Kenichiro Yoshida is making his boldest strategy move with the deal, which would give the company rights to 2.1 million songs from artists such as Drake, Sam Smith, Pharrell Williams and Sia.

Independent music labels group Impala and the European Composer and Songwriter Alliance have called for the EMI deal to be either blocked or cleared only with major concessions.

Reporting by Foo Yun Chee; Editing by Alexander Smith

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