Monday, April 11, 2011

Warners: People queue up to join the downward spiral

The New York Times are suggesting ten buyers have expressed an interest in buying Warner Music:

The Warner Music Group includes recorded music and publishing divisions, and among the potential buyers — for all or part of Warner — are music companies like Sony, Live Nation and BMG Rights Management, a joint venture between Bertelsmann and the private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis & Roberts; the Yucaipa Companies, led by Ron Burkle; Platinum Equity, led by Tom Gores, and the Gores Group, led by his brother, Alec Gores; Permira, another private equity company, which last bid for a major music company in 2006 with EMI; and the Tamares Group, led by Poju Zabludowicz, a Finnish-born real estate investor whose past includes work as an arms dealer.
An arms dealer? Oh, imagine how much fun it would be if a man splashed his money made from helping kill people spent a bit on buying Warners. Zabludowicz is also a big contributor to David Cameron's campaigns, so those bit of Warners' roster which features bland, eager to please acts like Jet and Dannii Minogue will probably be quite happy with such a name over the door.

There are some clouds over the possibility of a deal - the NYT quotes analysts who suggest the company is over-priced; they're looking for three billion dollars. Which is only a smidge under all the company's revenue from 2008.