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Monday, August 1, 2016 5:10am ET by  
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Simon Cowell didn't know Liam Payne was going to join rival label

Simon Cowell has admitted he had no idea Liam Payne was going to sign up with a rival record label.

The singer recently penned a solo contract with Capitol, which is owned by Universal.

He had been part of Cowell's Sony imprint Syco over the last four years with One Direction.

Speaking to The Sun, label boss said he had no idea Payne was going to sign with a rival label.

However, he admitted that he probably could have been clearer about his desire to see Payne stick with Sony.

He said: "It is a bit annoying if I am honest with you – mainly because it is a another label who has now got your artist who you worked with for so many years.

"But that is the music business, unfortunately. I don’t think anyone else from the band will do that.

"We had spoken a lot – him and I – about what he wanted to do next. But I guess he read about Harry’s deal and thought we weren’t interested.

“My impression was that he wasn’t in any hurry to make a record because he discussed this last year. He was more into songwriting.

"I was teasing him saying: ‘If you come up with a great song Liam make sure it is for you and don’t give it away. When you’re ready I am ready.’

“So I was a bit surprised. Of course there is a part of you that goes: ‘Maybe we should have had the conversation.’ That maybe is my fault but it has happened now."

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Watch Liam Payne perform with One Direction below:


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