Sony Buys Stake In Michael Jackson’s Catalog For $600 Million

(FRANCIS Sylvain/AFP via Getty Images)

Mariane Angela Contributor
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Sony Music Group has finalized a deal to acquire a 50% stake in Michael Jackson’s music catalog for $600 million, including both publishing and recorded masters, Billboard reported Friday.

The acquisition concluded in the latter part of the previous year, according to Billboard. It encompasses not just Jackson’s own compositions but also an array of songs from other iconic artists within the Mijac publishing catalog, such as Sly & the Family Stone, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Ray Charles, among others. This deal highlights Sony’s commitment to owning significant music assets, evident from their history of transactions with the Jackson estate that now total over $2 billion.

The deal’s scope excludes royalties from Broadway and other theatrical productions featuring Jackson’s music as it focuses solely on the recorded and publishing assets, the outlet stated. Jackson’s legacy is indeed far from waning as it continues to grow, especially with the rise of streaming platforms. His music’s consumption has seen a significant uptick, with a 37% increase in album equivalent units over three years in the U.S. alone, outpacing the overall market growth. Internationally, Jackson’s appeal is stronger, with a notable surge in streaming numbers.

The upcoming release of the biopic “Michael” is anticipated to further boost interest in Jackson’s music, potentially increasing revenue streams for the estate and rights holders. (RELATED: Michael Jackson Had 19 Fake IDs For Prescription Drugs, According To His Formerly Incarcerated Doctor)

The deal also maintains the involvement of co-executors John Branca and John McClain, who have been instrumental in managing the Jackson estate’s assets, according to Billboard. Additionally, it respects Primary Wave’s existing 10% stake in Jackson’s publishing assets, illustrating the complexities of music rights ownership and the collaborative nature of such high-stakes agreements.