Bug, EMI Still on Auction Blocks

Bug Music is on the auction block with second-round bids due tomorrow (9/9), according to national news sources including the New York Post and Reuters. Bug’s sale is expected to fetch $300 million or more for publishing rights to 250,000 songs, including classics recorded by Iggy Pop (“Lust for Life”), the Drifters (“Under the Boardwalk”) and more.

Reportedly in the running to purchase the major music publisher are Simon Fuller’s XIX Entertainment, Ole Music, Dutch firm Imagen, and BMG, which has been on a buying spree in recent years.

Meanwhile, final bids for EMI Music, which includes the publishing and label group, are due at the end of September. Len Blavatnik, who purchased Warner Music Group earlier this year, is said to be among the bidders. Sony/ATV has also shown interest.

Terra Firma boss Guy Hands played a wild card this week, which could affect the EMI transaction. Citigroup took control of EMI earlier this year, claiming that Terra Firma couldn’t meet its loan requirements. Now Hands is asking London’s High Court for access to bank documents about the loan in attempt to regain control of EMI.

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Sarah Skates has worked in the music business for more than a decade and is a longtime contributor to MusicRow.

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