LOS ANGELES — Universal Music Group is selling Parlophone — the label of acts like Coldplay, David Guetta, and Radiohead — to Warner Music Group for $765 million. It’s the largest chunk of assets European regulators demanded be sold when Universal bought EMI last year for $1.9 billion.
Universal, a unit of Vivendi SA, sold EMI’s Mute Records, the home of Depeche Mode, to BMG for about $16 million in December, and it must sell other smaller labels to fulfill its obligations to antitrust authorities.
But the world’s largest recording company is keeping key acts from the EMI roster, including The Beatles and Swedish House Mafia. Unwinding the smaller labels will leave the business dominated by three recording groups: Universal, Sony Music Entertainment, and Warner Music.
When subtracting proceeds from the sales, Universal will have spent around $942 million to acquire EMI’s recording operations in the three largest markets: the United States, Japan, and Germany.