EMI chief quits as Terra Firma takes charge

Two of the senior managers at EMI, the UK record company recently acquired by buyout firm Terra Firma, have stepped down ahead of its planned de-listing in September. They will be replaced by two representatives from the buyout firm.

EMI chief executive Eric Nicoli has agreed to step down from the ailing UK record company, just weeks ahead of its planned delisting following a successful take-private bid from Terra Firma.

Martin Stewart, chief financial officer of both EMI Group and EMI Music, has also resigned from the company, according to an EMI statement today.

Terra Firma, the UK buyout firm run by Guy Hands, is bringing in two of its own managing directors to fill the gap. Chris Roling has been appointed as chief operating officer of EMI Group and chief financial officer of both EMI Group and EMI Music, while Ashley Unwin will join as director of business transformation for EMI Group and EMI Music.

The buyout firm had its £2.4 billion ($4.8 billion, €3.6 billion) bid accepted by shareholders earlier this month. It plans to de-list EMI on or around 18 September.

Some continuity will be provided by Roger Faxon, who will continue in his current role as chairman and chief executive of the music publishing arm.

The de-listing will also usher in a new governance structure, where the board of EMI will report to a supervisory board chaired by Hands himself. Another Terra Firma managing director, Julie Williamson, will focus on EMI’s strategic relationships.

Hands said: “Eric has steered EMI through a period when the industry has faced extreme change and we thank him for providing a smooth transition into our ownership.”