Big layoffs at Guy Hands’ EMI, anticipated for nearly a year, have begun, reports music gossip site The Daily Swarm. We’ll note that while the Swarm describes a “bloodbath”, and previous reports have pegged expected body count at 2,000, so far this seems to be a couple dozen people. We also note that we haven’t been able to confirm any of this so far:
Word is trickling in about the major layoffs starting today at EMI.
The Velvet Rope says 10 people out at Blue Note, and most of the staff at Caroline; Capitol and Virgin staff to learn who stays and goes tomorrow.
UPDATE: Capitol Music Group has started cuts in marketing and A&R. Many more expected tomorrow.
UPDATE: Capitol PR apparently survives, and what’s left of the publicists at the smaller labels will be folded into that group.
Billboard, meanwhile, says that two execs at EMI’s Nashville unit — Larry Willoughby and VP of sales Bill Kennedy — are out, but also says this is no big deal. In fact, Billboard seems to think it’s pretty great:
EMI had no official comment on the cuts, but it’s expected that these will be among the last since the company previously announced that all restructuring would be finalised by the end of June. Denise Arguijo, a production manager has also reportedly exited the Nashville division.
As previously reported, EMI is making decisive moves toward a radically centralized management structure built around function and region, rather than by label. To execute these plans, EMI chairman Guy Hands has assigned EMI veterans to new responsibilities, poached top-flight executives from rival labels and recruited fresh talent from outside the music business.