Sony officially notified the European Commission about their planned merger with EMI Music Publishing two weeks ago, giving the EC 25 days to make their initial assessment.
But The British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors (BASCA) has warned that the merger will make Sony a “major superpower” in the music industry, dominating licensing markets and limiting creator choice.
If the deal was to complete with objection it would almost double the publishing catalog of Sony. The Independent Music Companies Association (IMPALA) has already lodged its concerns with the European Commission.
Sony initially acquired 30% of EMI Music Publishing in 2012 but was forced by the European Commission to sell part of the acquisition “Rosetta” to BMG for around $90m.
“At a time when the EU is looking to restore a balanced, diverse and competitive online marketplace for music, to allow the concentration of market leverage in this way seems antithetical to that purpose,” said BASCA chair Crispin Hunt in a statement.
“If we are to heed the economic lessons of ‘too big to fail', it seems incautious to concede near absolute control of the music market to one player,” Hunt continued, adding, “Setting up the music ecosystem so that it once again runs on competition as opposed to oligopoly is the key to a flourishing market, both online and off.”