Warner Music may make higher offer for EMI


LONDON -- Warner Music Group is not out of the hunt for EMI Group.

In a statement issued Monday, WMG confirmed that it "continues actively to consider an offer for EMI Group."

Any such offer for the London-based major, it said, "would be preconditional on appropriate anti-trust clearances being obtained (or the preconditions waived) but not subject to any other precondition."

It is WMG's first public comment on EMI since directors at the latter company on May 21 recommended a swoop from European private equity firm Terra Firma worth £2.65 ($5.22) per share.

That sum values the music major on an enterprise value basis at £3.2 billion ($6.3 billion) and values the entire issued and to be issued share capital of EMI at about £2.4 billion ($4.7 billion).

Well-placed sources suggest that WMG would have to raise its bid to £2.85 -£2.90 ($5.61-$5.71) per share to accommodate for the delay and risk anti-trust scrutiny would bring.

WMG added Monday that its announcement "does not amount to a firm intention to make an offer or preconditional offer, and accordingly there can be no certainty that any offer or preconditional offer will be made."

It added, "A further announcement will be made in due course."

Stock in EMI closed down 2 pence Monday to £2.71 ($5.34).