GOODBYE EMI?

The group's labels get set to merge...

GOODBYE EMI?
EMI, one of the most famous names in the music industry, is set to disappear as the fallout from the Mariah Carey affair continues.

The EMI group will now merge all its labels under the Capitol and Virgin banners.

EMI issued a profit warning earlier in the week slashing its projection for the year from £207 million to £150 million, blaming "specific one-off costs", a reference to Mariah Carey, as well as poor sales. The diva was dumped last month one album into her five-album deal, with a £19 million kiss-off. She had signed to EMI subsidiary Virgin in April 2001 for an estimated £70 million, one of the most lucrative deals in the recording industry's history.

The BBC reports that several executive posts within the company will also go as a result of the change.

"This change in structure clarifies the roles of our creative record labels and focuses them on the key activities that will make a difference in signing, developing and marketing great talent," new head of recorded music for EMI Alain Levy said.

"Capitol, which has a long and rich musical legacy, and Virgin will be established as the two global brands for our creative activities that represent different identities with their own style and rich histories," he added.

EMI, an acronym for Electric And Musical Industries, was created by the merger of The Gramophone Company and The Columbia Gramophone Company in 1931. They bought Capitol in 1955. The label at that time had big-name American stars such as Nat King Cole and Frank Sinatra on its roster. Virgin Records was bought from Richard Branson in 1992.

Robbie Williams, Paul McCartney, Coldplay and [a][/a] are amongst the names currently under the EMI umbrella.

A spokesperson for EMI insisted to NME.COM today (February 8) that though "the name over the door has changed, it's business as usual."
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