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EC looking into Sony-EMP

REGULATORS IN MOTION: As part of its scrutiny of the Sony-led coalition’s $2.2 billion purchase of EMI Music Publishing, the European Commission is quizzing rivals and customers regarding potential price increases, Bloomberg News reports. The EC also asked whether licenses for Sony/ATV and EMP were critical for online music services, according to a copy of a questionnaire put together by the commission. “Would Sony/ATV’s publishing rights repertoire become inherently more valuable after the acquisition of the EMI” publishing repertoire, the questionnaire asked, in one of more than 120 questions for companies involved in licensing music publishing rights. The EC also asked whether the acquisition would bolster the combined companies’ negotiating power with the collecting societies. EC spokesman Antoine Colombani declined to comment on the document, while Sony/ATV and EMI didn’t immediately respond to a voicemails. April 2 deadline has been set for a ruling on the bid. (3/7a)

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