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Millions of Music Hits May Soon Be for Sale. Will Sony Buy Them?

  • Mubadala is reaching out to potential buyers for stake in EMI
  • Sony already owns 40 percent of music publisher, runs business
Inside The 2016 Consumer Electronics Show

Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

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Sony Corp. held preliminary talks to acquire a majority stake in EMI Music Publishing, according to people with knowledge of the matter, as its Abu Dhabi-based owner seeks to cash in on the booming market for streamed music.

Mubadala Investment Co. has begun reaching out to potential suitors for the catalog of more than 2.1 million songs, which includes hits from Beyonce and Carole King, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing private information. The Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund has held talks with Sony and approached other possible buyers, including entertainment groups and potential financial bidders, the people said.