Sony eyes bid for label EMI

SONY Music could bid for troubled record label EMI after a whirlwind weekend for the firm.

Head of Sony Music Rolf Schmidt-Holz said: “We are in a position that allows us to seize every opportunity in the market – including EMI.”

The speculation comes after Guy Hands appeared to pull off an audacious eleventh-hour deal to save EMI from the clutches of its lender Citigroup.

The struggling record label – owned by his Terra Firma private equity vehicle – looked set to be taken over by the bank after it struggled to keep up payments on its £2.6bn debt pile.

Hands had already gone cap in hand to investors and the cash appeared to have dried up.

However, Hands is now confident he will pass a vote tomorrow ensuring 75 per cent of investors will stump up £105m.

EMI requires around £360m to service its debt until 2015 but Hands is confident he can raise the rest of the cash later in the year.

If the vote passes it will be a personal victory for Hands, who is embroiled in a bitter legal dispute with Citi.

He claims the bank misled him over a rival bidder pulling out of the running before he acquired the firm. Citi denies any wrongdoing.

EMI is now worth just over half of the £4.2bn Hands paid for it in 2007.

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