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Sony to pay $2.3 billion to acquire control of EMI Music

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TOKYO (Reuters) – Sony Corp (6758.T) said on Tuesday it would pay about $2.3 billion (£1.7 billion) to gain control of EMI Music Publishing, as it seeks to boost entertainment content assets and shift away from low-margin consumer electronics.

Sony Corp’s new President and Chief Executive Officer Kenichiro Yoshida attends a news conference on their business plan at the company’s headquarters in Tokyo, Japan May 22, 2018. REUTERS/Toru Hanai

Wholly owned unit Sony Corporation of America will buy all of the roughly 60 percent stake in EMI Music held by Mubadala Investment Company, lifting Sony’s holding to 90 percent and making it a consolidated subsidiary.

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The acquisition is the biggest so far by new CEO Kenichiro Yoshida, who is tasked with boosting stable revenue streams after a major overhaul under his predecessor that shifted the firm’s focus to video games and image sensors.

Sony also said in a statement it expects operating profit at its video games and network services unit to fall to between 130 billion yen and 170 billion yen (£874.2 million and £1.14 billion) in the financial year ending March 2021, down from the 190 billion yen forecast for this financial year.

At the time, its PlayStation 4 (PS4) would be nearing the end of a game console’s typical life cycle.

Sony sees operating profit at its semiconductor business growing to 160-200 billion yen at the end of the forecast period, compared with a prediction of 100 billion yen for this year.

Sony shares were down as much as 3.7 percent in morning trading in Tokyo.

Reporting by Makiko Yamazaki and Sam Nussey; Editing by Chang-Ran Kim and Edwina Gibbs

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