Lady Gaga is one of the artists on the books of Universal Music Group
Lady Gaga is one of the artists on the books of Universal Music Group KEVIN WINTER/GETTY IMAGES

Tencent is close to getting a hold on the back catalogues of the Beatles and Queen by taking a €3 billion stake in Universal Music.

Vivendi, the French media group that owns Universal, is in talks to sell 10 per cent of the company to Tencent, the Chinese internet group that owns Tencent Music, developer of the most popular streaming apps in China. Universal, based in Los Angeles, is the world’s largest music label and is also home to artists such as Lady Gaga and Taylor Swift.

Vivendi, controlled by Vincent Bolloré, 67, the billionaire, and valued at €31 billion, owns Canal+, the French pay television company, and Havas, the advertising group. Vivendi said last year that it was seeking to sell up to half…