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Schmidt-Holtz Going?

CULTURE CLASH: Sony Music topper Rolf Schmidt-Holtz is reportedly in the last year of his deal, and insiders say there’s once again some major jockeying for position going on over control of the U.S. company. A year and a half after Bertelsmann sold its half of Sony BMG, the residue of the ill-begotten merger is still very much in evidence at 550 Madison, as two teams with dramatically different cultures continue to uneasily co-exist, much as they have since the merger was finalized back in 2003. Now, some of the key players from each side of the company reportedly have begun to be openly critical of each other, with their rancor rumored to have come to a head on Grammy weekend. In the past, Schmidt-Holtz has dealt with these conflicting agendas by dumping a number of executives whom he believed were at the center of these sorts of problems; notably, the dismissals of Don Ienner and Charles Goldstuck. Most believe another year will be added to his deal, but the big question is, if Schmidt-Holtz doesn’t re-up, who will be named as his successor? (2/11p)

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