EMI to mortgage off its catalogue in £400m rescue bid

In an effort to solve its cash flow crisis EMI is now in talks with major rival labels to license its North American catalogue business for a five year period.

This move is unrivalled in the recording industry and if successful EMI believes it can potentially raise £400m. This would be more than enough to stave off the looming takeover by its lender, Citigroup, which could take control of the business on June 14, 2010.

EMI’s back catalogue includes tracks by The Beatles, Blondie, Nick Cave and Moby and contributes to virtually all of the company’s recorded music division, and generates up to £100m a year in North America alone.

If this strategy is successful EMI would temporarily withdraw from the world’s largest music market, but it must be careful as its big earners such as Pink Floyd and Queen have already threatened to take their back catalogue elsewhere.

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Image courtesy of: http://www.flickr.com/photos/byrion/

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