EMI is banking on Robbie Williams and Norah Jones being top sellers in the second half of its financial year, with a trading statement from the music giant out tomorrow expected to indicate a sharp drop in first-half sales.
Overall, the company is expected to say trading indicates that full-year sales to the end of next March are likely to be about £2.07bn, compared with nearly £2.08bnin the previous 12 months.
The City is expecting a strong schedule of releases from EMI in the second half of the year, including new albums from Williams and Jones.
There will also be a new album of Beatles songs, called Love, put together by the band's former producer Sir George Martin and his son Giles.
Analysts at Citigroup believe five of EMI's forthcoming albums could sell more than three million copies each and they note that Jones has previously done at least as well as Coldplay, another EMI group, whose last album sold 7.5mcopies.
In the US, which accounts for 29% of its sales, the overall music market grew slightly last month. Sales in Japan, which makes up about 18%of EMI's market, have seen steady growth this year.
Overall sales of music in the UK, which accounts for about 17%of EMI's income, are likely to be down about 2%.