The Financial Times says Guy Hands, who bought EMI a year ago but still hasn’t found anyone to run the troubled music label, may have finally found his man. He looks ready to hire Elio Leoni Sceti, a 42-year-old P&G vet who now heads the European division of Reckitt Benckiser, a British packaged goods company that brings you products like Woolite and French’s Mustard.
As far as we can tell, Elio has zero experience in the music business. Then again, neither did his predecessor: Former EMI CEO Eric Nicoli took over the company after running cookie giant United Biscuits. FT:
Terra Firma and Reckitt Benckiser would not comment, but Mr Hands is also understood to have approached executives from the film and newspaper industries.
Mr Hands had originally been expected to appoint a chief executive for the whole group, but will now have separate chief executives for EMI Music and EMI Music Publishing reporting directly to him.
The decision has underpinned speculation that Mr Hands could yet seek to merge the recorded music business with Warner Music, or syndicate publishing earnings, as his group looks for ways to repay the £2.4bn debt it took on just before the credit crunch began.
Mr Sceti, a former Procter & Gamble executive who joined Benckiser in 1992, worked as its general manager in Germany in Italy before taking charge of its North American household division and then category development. He has been in his current role for two years.