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Oz gives OK to music merger

Universal Music wins approval for BMG Music Publishing takeover

LONDON — Universal Music moved a step closer to winning approval for its acquisition of BMG Music Publishing after the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission gave the green light for the takeover.

The move follows the lead of the U.S. Department of Justice, which has also given its blessing to the merger.

The Australian regulator said in its ruling, “It was considered unlikely that the proposed acquisition would substantially lessen competition in the national market for the acquisition of rights from authors by music publishers.”

Welcoming the latest step in the regulatory approval, Universal said in a statement, “We are pleased that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has cleared our proposed acquisition of BMG Music Publishing Group. Since this approval follows our recent regulatory clearance in the United States by the Department of Justice, we will continue to work with the European Commission during Phase II of its review and look forward to securing regulatory clearance in due course.”