Robbie Williams may leave EMI when his current contract is up, his co-manager said.
"I would be very wary about signing him to any major at the moment," Tim Clark of IE Music told the U.K.’s Daily Telegraph.
He declined to comment on the act’s current contract terms, which includes the delivery of one more studio album and a best-of compilation, but said "all options" are open once his obligations to EMI are fulfilled.
EMI has recently had mixed fortunes when it’s come to re-signing acts: Paul McCartney and Radiohead have opted to put out new albums without the support of a major label. Iron Maiden is believed to have put pen to one of the company’s new all-encompassing deals that include revenues from touring and merchandise.
Madonna is another to leave a major label, dumping Warner to place both her live and recorded work in Live Nation’s control.
Williams is the next major artist to have a contract up for renegotiation, the first since Guy Hands’ Terra Firma equity group bought the U.K.’s last remaining major label.
"What concerns us with old ways is that we take overpriced and shoddy services, particularly now that we have a fantastic opportunity of getting to a direct fanbase," he explained, pointing out the possibilities offered by the Internet. "What we really don’t want is the dead hand of multinationals throttling these brilliant opportunities."
Joss Stone is another artist said to be "disillusioned" with the company, the Times reported.
EMI released a statement saying: "Robbie Williams is clearly an important artist but only represented in his best year less than 1 percent of the worldwide revenues of EMI."