The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Robbie cuts record deal

London, Oct. 2 (Reuters): Pop star Robbie Williams has agreed to a four-record deal worth about £80 million ($125 million) with EMI, the biggest in British music history, sources close to the negotiations said today.

The deal with the former Take That singer hailed as the new Frank Sinatra will include £10 million up front, £15 million on completion of the first record and £55 million for the remaining three records, the sources said. It is structured to meet strict sales targets and aims to help Williams become a star in the United States, a market he has failed to break.

EMI representatives declined to comment and Williams’ publicist was not immediately available. The singer is scheduled to hold a news conference in London later .

EMI has had mixed fortunes with big name signings.

In April 2001, it penned a deal with American performer Mariah Carey for an estimated $100 million — but she was cut loose with a $30 million pay-off after her album flopped.

Williams’ Swing When You're Winning album was EMI’s best-selling release last year, at 5.4 million copies, despite not being released in the United States. That compares to the Beatles 1 album, which sold 22 million in the previous year. Williams’ new album Escapology will be released next month.

EMI, whose stars include Lenny Kravitz and Janet Jackson, said earlier in the year that it was scrapping the “EMI” name as a label and combining back-office operations as part of plans to cut costs and improve creativity.

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