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Top guitar and music tech firms raided in price-fixing probe

(Image credit: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

Top guitar and music tech companies are said to have been raided in a UK price-fixing probe.

The five companies are yet to be named, but the Sunday Telegraph claims they include musical instrument giants Yamaha, Roland, Korg, Casio and Fender.

Dawn raids were reportedly conducted by staff from the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

The CMA website lists a study named ‘Musical instruments and equipment: suspected anti-competitive agreements’, which began on 17 April, and is expected to continue until autumn 2018.

It also states that ‘this investigation is at an early stage and no assumptions should be made that competition law has been infringed.’

The inquiry seeks to discover whether attempts have been made to manipulate sales of musical instruments and pro-audio-equipment with price fixing or controlled sales to specific areas of the country, according to the Sunday Telegraph.

14 leading music shops have been asked to provide details of dealings with the companies.

Paul McManus, chief executive of the Music Industries Association, said: “As the trade body for the UK musical instrument industry we have naturally offered all possible support and help to the CMA in their investigation.

“We are a very small part of the overall music industry and we are concerned that we have warranted this investigation.”

Michael Astley-Brown

Mike is Editor-in-Chief of GuitarWorld.com, in addition to being an offset fiend and recovering pedal addict. He has a master's degree in journalism, and has spent the past decade writing and editing for guitar publications including MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitarist, as well as a decade-and-a-half performing in bands of variable genre (and quality). In his free time, you'll find him making progressive instrumental rock under the nom de plume Maebe.

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