A PYMNTS Company

France: Regulator approved Warner Music’s owner taking a controlling stake in Deezer

 |  September 11, 2016

The French competition regulator gave the all-clear earlier this summer to Warner Music owner Access Industries taking a controlling stake in that there streaming whatnot Deezer, it emerged earlier this week. So well done Len.

Access Industries seemingly increased its stake in Deezer beyond 50% as a result of the streaming music company’s previously reported 100 million euro investment round back in January, which was led by Len Blavatnik’s US-based conglomerate. Although previous majority shareholder Orange still has a stake, it’s thought the tel co’s shareholding is now around about 10%.

The deal took majority ownership of Deezer out of French control for the first time, and also raised a few competition concerns, mainly because of Access owning Warner Music outright. It was suggested that Access having control of Deezer could result in the streaming service giving preferential treatment to Warner labels, or vice versa.

However, the French competition regulator concluded that neither Warner nor Deezer had sufficient market share to justify those concerns. While Deezer may be a major player in the French streaming market, it’s global market share is much smaller and, anyway, a mainstream streaming service couldn’t compete without music from at least the other two bigger major record companies, so the streaming firm couldn’t afford not to keep them sweet.

Full Content: Complete Music Update

Want more news? Subscribe to CPI’s free daily newsletter for more headlines and updates on antitrust developments around the world.