The acquisition is the biggest strategic move yet by new CEO Kenichiro Yoshida and gives Sony a catalogue of more than two million songs. The deal is part of Yoshida's mission to get out of hardware and make revenue more stable with rights to entertainment content -- a strategy that follows a major revamp by his predecessor which shifted Sony's focus away from low-margin consumer electronics.
The spread of the internet led to a shrinking of the music market from around 1999 to 2014, Yoshida said, but added that has turned around with the growth of fixed-price music streaming services.
The deal values EMI Music Publishing at $4.75 billion including debt, more than double the $2.2 billion value given in 2011 when a consortium led by Sony won bidding rights for the company. EMI currently commands 15 percent of the music publishing industry which combined with its Sony ATV business would make the Japanese giant the industry leader with market share of 26 percent, a company spokesman said.