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Sony Acquires Majority Stake in Michael Jackson Catalog

Sony Music, Michael Jackson catalog, majority stake acquisition, music publishing, recorded masters, Mijac publishing catalog

Sony Music Group has completed its acquisition of 50% ownership in Michael Jackson’s publishing and recorded masters. This deal, which was first reported by Variety a year ago, has now been finalized.

The deal, valued at approximately $1.2 billion, marks the largest acquisition of music artist assets in history. Sony has obtained a significant share of Jackson’s publishing assets, while Primary Wave Music retains a 10% stake. The acquisition builds upon Sony’s long-standing association with Jackson’s music catalog and expands its ownership in the music publishing industry.

Details of the Acquisition

Sony Music Group has made history with the largest acquisition of assets belonging to a single music artist. In this complex agreement, Sony has acquired assets from Michael Jackson’s Mijac publishing catalog. This catalog includes titles by legendary artists such as Sly & the Family Stone, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Ray Charles, among others. However, it is important to note that royalties from the “MJ” Broadway musical and similar productions are excluded from the deal.

Sony Music Group has obtained a significant share of Michael Jackson’s publishing assets, but a 10% stake will be retained by Primary Wave Music. Representatives for Sony, the Jackson estate, and Primary Wave have chosen not to comment on the matter. The co-executors of the estate, John Branca and John McClain, are expected to continue in their roles. It is worth noting that Sony has a long-standing association with Jackson’s recorded-music catalog, as it has been the exclusive home for his solo career and his time with the Jackson 5.

Previous Agreements

Michael Jackson’s music catalog, particularly his legendary “Thriller” album, continues to be one of the most profitable in history. Sony’s previous agreements with the Jackson estate have played a major role in expanding its ownership within the music publishing industry. In 2016, Sony struck a $750 million deal with the estate, and in 2018, the acquisition of the Jackson estate’s 25.1% stake in EMI Music Publishing further strengthened Sony’s position.

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