We said we'd keep you updated – and now the CMA has concluded that bringing AWAL and rival label services outfit The Orchard under one corporate roof will not hurt the industry, artists and/or music fans. Sony Music announced its $430m acquisition of AWAL in February 2021, with plans to have it sit alongside The Orchard within the major label.
As the deal was completed in May 2021, the CMA launched an investigation of the acquisition on competition grounds. "The CMA has provisionally found that, while not currently competing closely due to their different areas of focus, The Orchard may have become a stronger rival to AWAL in the supply of artist services in future," they said. Sony seemed pleased as punch with the news: "Our investment in AWAL will deliver real benefits for artists and consumers, amidst intense competition at every level of the music industry. We look forward to continuing to work with the CMA throughout the final stages of their review." It ain't t over till it's over, but it looks like Sony have squeaked by here. Via CMA