Megabucks music catalog acquisitions aren’t exactly a thing of the past. Sony Music just bought half of Michael Jackson’s publishing and recording catalogs, and Billboard reports the company will pay at least $600 million — and possibly as much as $750 million.
The report also claimed that the deal included other songs from the late star’s Mijac publishing catalog: songs written and/or performed by Jerry Lee Lewis, Curtis Mayfield and Percy Sledge, among others.
Previous versions of Sony Music had a long partnership with Jackson during his lifetime, each owning half of the Sony/ATV publisher. Jackson died in 2009 and Sony would later (in 2016) pay $750 million to buy back his half of the company.
According to Variety, Primary Wave continues to hold a 10% stake in Jackson’s publishing assets, but none of the companies involved have made official comments on the details of the deal.
If the reported details are correct, this is the largest such acquisition to date in terms of overall catalog value, fueled by the continued popularity of Jackson’s music streaming – for example, he has more than 38 million monthly listeners on Spotify.
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