Universal’s Lucian Grainge Proposes ‘Manifesto For New Music Industry’

From Financial Times:

Universal Music will propose to regulators in the coming weeks a “manifesto” for restoring music industry growth as it seeks to save its ₤1.2bn bid for EMI’s recorded music business, its chairman and chief executive has said.

Lucian Grainge told the Financial Times that the Vivendi-owned market leader would sell assets to address fears that its market share could exceed 50 per cent in some countries and would offer commitments about its future dealings with digital start-ups, independent labels and larger rivals.

“I’m extremely open-minded about working with the [European] Commission in the context of behavioural remedies as well as divestitures,” he said in his first interview since launching the bid in November.
Universal has told the commission it will increase “A&R” investment in developing new artists across its own labels and those of EMI, one person familiar with the details said.

Mr Grainge said EMI had suffered an “enormous” cut to A&R spending under Terra Firma, Guy Hands’ private equity firm, which lost control of EMI to Citigroup last year. Universal would increase investment “in different artists and genres in different languages,” he said.

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