Sony becomes the world’s largest music publisher after buying a controlling stake in EMI

Sony is buying a controlling stake in EMI Music Publishing as part of the company’s plan to increase its revenue from streaming media services like Apple Music.

They’ll buy a 60% stake owned by Mubadala Investment Company, lifting its ownership to around 90% from 30% currently to become the world’s largest music publisher. The purchase gives EMI a value of around $4.75 billion, including debt.

EMI currently holds 15% of the music publishing industry. The combined stake following the deal, however, makes Sony the industry leader in the music space with 26% market share.

Per BBC, the remaining 10% is held by the estate of Michael Jackson.

Reuters reported Tuesday that the Japanese consumer electronics conglomerate would pay about $2.3 billion to gain a controlling stake in EMI.

The acquisition gives the Walkman inventor a catalogue of more than two million songs from EMI artists such as Kanye West, Sam Smith and Sia.

“The rise in digital streaming is also expanding songwriter royalty revenues, with Sony capturing value as manager of the copyrights backed by direct deals with the likes of Spotify, Apple Music, Google Play, SoundCloud and YouTube,” said Macquarie analyst Damian Thong.

Image: New Sony President and CEO Kenichiro Yoshida attends a news conference at the company’s headquarters in Tokyo, Japan May 22, 2018. REUTERS/Toru Hanai