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Industry Updates: Acquisition and Bankruptcy

Welcome to this week’s industry updates. We strive to keep you informed on the latest and greatest news throughout the industry!

Trouble Across the Ocean:

An investigation has been opened into the ticket website Viagogo by the National Trading Standards  for the persistent misleading of consumers. This occurred only hours after the digital minister, Margot James, urged consumers to boycott the company. This is shocking as it’s rare for a government minister to place the spotlight on a singular company for its behavior.

Viagogo is accused of misleading consumers by failing to be transparent about excess fees added to the ticket prices displays online. It had received previous warnings from the regulator, but nothing was done. It also deluded customers by listing the phrase “official site”, creating the assumption that Viagogo was a primary ticket agent rather than a website designed to resell tickets. Furthermore, they promise “100% guarantee” to those who purchase tickets from their website although this cannot be promised through a resale site.

The ASA has requested that search engines such as Google and Bing remove some of the Geneva-based company’s listings. It has also launched an advertising campaign to highlight the Viagogo’s deception.

Big News For Sony:

One of the powerhouses of the music industry just got stronger. Sony has made the move to pay $2.3bn to take control of EMI Music Publishing. This cements the company’s place as the globe’s largest music publishing company.

2.1m EMI songs have been added to Sony’s already extensive catalogue of 2.3m songs as a result of this acquisition. EMI’s catalogue includes a variety of artists such as Carole King, Kanye West, Pink, Sam Smith and Drake. This marks Kenichiro Yoshida’s first deal as the new chief executive.

The music publishing sector of the industry has become a progressively significant cash-flow generator as the music industry moves into the digital age. Each moment something is streamed or sold, the label accumulates income for the recording, while the publisher collects for the songwriters.

Gibson Guitar Bankrupt:

The makers of rock and roll’s favorite guitars, Gibson Brands, has filed for bankruptcy protection after enduring a demoralizing financial fall from its investments in consumer electronic brands. Gibson stated Tuesday that it needed court protection from creditors to reorganize its business. The company plans to continue the business of designing, building and selling instruments and equipment but will close its branch that makes Philips headphones and other electronic accessories.

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