EMI Group plc, the music-based retail corporation today posted yearly drop in profits upwards of £180m, at the same time as announcing that it had made a 'firm offer' for the music arm of Warner Bros.
EMI attributed the massive drop in profits to the completion of debt restructuring programme, in addition to 'unprecedented levels of retailer de-stocking in Japan and a reorganisation in EMI Music Publishing'.
EMI is the parent of record labels such as Parlophone in the UK (Coldplay, Radiohead, Blur [through Food Records] ) and Capitol in the United States (Coldplay, Radiohead, Blur). Top of the EMI publishing division tree this year were Pink, Pharrell Williams, Alan Jackson, Sean Paul, Robbie Williams and Evanescence.
The company once again reiterated that: 'Both physical and online piracy continue to be a major problem for the industry. A flood of blank CDRs, mainly coming from Asia, has fuelled physical piracy in many parts of the world and is contributing to industry declines. In the online world, even though the US industry has shown a small decline in illegal file sharing as a result of industry action, online piracy continues to do massive damage.'
Whilst bemoaning the financial plight of the industry, the company confirmed that it had made a 'firm offer' for Warners. EMI Chairman, Eric Nicoli, added that discussions with Time Warner had 'progressed well' and were 'at an advanced stage'.
"We have made a firm proposal to Time Warner which, we believe, would create substantial value for the shareholders of both companies," he added.
The private offer is expected to value the whole of Warner Music - including its Warner Chappell music publishing arm - at about $2.5bn, reports added.
The move follows merger plans announced by Sony and BMG earlier this month.
To secure the deal, it is thought that EMI will have to offer Warners £1bn in cash.
We are aware that this story has nothing to do with music.