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UPDATED: Universal Music Group has EMI purchase cleared in New Zealand

Ahren Lester
UPDATED: Universal Music Group has EMI purchase cleared in New Zealand

The Vivendi-owned music giant, Universal Music Group, has received the nod of approval for its purchase of fellow music giant EMI from New Zealand’s regulators.

Music Week revealed that earlier today (June 21st) the New Zealand Commerce Commission gave the green light to the $1.9 billion bid for the iconic British label’s recorded music unit.

This is the first regulator in the world to offer acceptance of the proposed purchase. This news arrived on the same day that Universal’s group Chairman and Chief Executive, Lucian Grainge, is set to appear at a US Senate hearing surrounding the deal.

The news also comes just after the company received the European Commission's statement of objections to the purchase on June 13th after it originally consulted the Commission earlier this year. The company is now preparing its responses. 

If the purchase if accepted by all regulators then it is anticipated that Universal’s global market share in recorded music will jump to more than 40 per cent from its present publicised global market share of 26.5 per cent (announced in November 2011). Indeed, in some European countries their market share would be above 50 per cent.

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EMI—responsible for the likes of The Beatles, Katy Perry, Tinie Tempah, Coldplay and more—is currently owned by Citigroup after its previous owner, Terra Firma, defaulted on loans it owed Citigroup. According to Grainge, EMI under the ownership of Universal will continue to be supported as a "distinct business".

The European Commission has already given the go-ahead in April to a Sony/ATV consortium to purchase EMI's music publishing business for $2.2 billion.

The European Commission has set September 6th as the deadline for making their decision.

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Tags: emi, universal music, vivendi, New Zealand

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