Record company EMI Group has appointed an executive with no experience of the music business to head up its record division, as part of the firm’s strategy to fill key positions with talent from outside the industry.
EMI yesterday announced that Elio Leoni-Sceti, vice-president of household goods firm Reckitt Benckiser, would become chief executive of its recorded music division.
Leoni-Sceti, 42, began his career as a brand manager at Procter & Gamble in 1988 before moving to Rickett, which makes Dettol bleach and Mr Sheen furniture polish, in 1992. Since 2005, he has managed the group’s £3bn European business.
Terra Firma, Guy Hands’ private equity group, bought the ailing EMI for £3.2bn last year, after the record giant experienced a dramatic decline in sales and market share. In fiscal 2007, it incurred losses of £260m.
Hands embarked on one of the biggest shake-ups the record industry has ever seen, implementing a cost cutting exercise to save around £200m. He will now step back into the hands-off role of chairman, signalling that the overhaul is nearing its end.
Leoni-Sceti joins EMI as it closes a redundancy scheme in which 2,000 jobs were cut from a workforce of 5,500.
“Having completed the organisational restructuring , Elio joins at the right time to shape, drive and lead EMI to become the world’s most artist-focused and consumer-friendly music company,” said Hands.
“The potential that can be realized in this industry is massive. Music consumption is growing more than ever across the world and I cannot wait to get started and to work with EMI’s artists and employees,” said Leoni-Sceti.