The live music division of the high street retail giant HMV has received yet further interest from Sony, Warner Music and Live Nation in regards to a potential buyout.
This further interest comes after Time Out owner Oakley Capital and O2 Arena owner AEG considered bidding for HMV Live earlier this year.
HMV Live operates 13 venues across the country including the Hammersmith Apollo and the Jazz Café in London.
They also run a number of festivals such as London’s Lovebox and the Global Gathering near Stratford-upon-Avon.
HMV paid £60 million for HMV Live back in 2007. HMV’s Chief Executive, Simon Fox, believes that the sale of HMV Live should bring in more than this figure. Indeed, the Daily Express suggests that the division could raise between £70 million and £100 million.
Speculation will become more widespread as HMV released sales reports from the pre-Christmas period showing that year-on-year sales were down 8.2%.
Of all the potential bidders so far, Live Nation, who operate the Brixton Academy and Shepherd’s Bush Empire, seem the strongest contender.
Live Nation previously owned the Hammersmith Apollo but had been forced to sell it by the competition commission to the MAMA Group. In turn, the MAMA Group was purchased by HMV in 2010.
“Live Nation has a clear interest in HMV’s live music arm,” explained one source to the Daily Express, “and the fact that it’s profitable will make the deal all the more palatable.”