Warner Music Group has been sold to Len Blavatnik and his Access Industries for $3.3 billion in an all-cash transaction. The meeting to choose the winner of Warner was held yesterday with the official announcement dropping today. After the close, WMG will become a privately held company with no stocks traded on the New York Stock Exchange, but it will remain in its current space and keep its Warner Music Group name.
WMG’s chairman and CEO, Edgar Bronfman Jr., said in a press release that he viewed the buy as an “exceptional value-maximizing opportunity that serves the best interests of stockholders as well as the best interests of music fans, our recording artists and songwriters, and the wonderful people of this company.” WMG is home to a wide range of artists, from Green Day to T.I. and plenty in between.
In other news…
• 25-year music industry veteran Veronica Gretton has launched 401K Music, a boutique artist development publishing company. 401K’s first clients include the B-52s and Dylan Rau, lead singer of Bear Hands.
• Amazon dropped the price of some of the singles in its song store to 69 cents last week. The move certainly makes those downloads a better bargain than those offered on iTunes, but it probably won’t put a serious dent in Apple’s sales. Like striking a brick wall with a cotton ball.
• Watch CDs become less relevant sources of revenue in the music industry from 2000 to 2010 in this handy time-lapse pie chart from Digital Music News.
• Music-sharing site SoundCloud announced its new SoundCloud Labs site, where the company’s staffers will post new projects under development. Check out Mashable’s summary of its offerings here.
Industry Wrap is a weekly CMJ column covering industry-related music news. Send tips to Christine Werthman at firstname.lastname@example.org.