Feb 12, 2024 - Business

Sony said to pay around $600M for Michael Jackson catalog deal

Michael Jackson performs on stage

Michael Jackson. Photo: Kevin Mazur/WireImage

Sony has agreed to pay around $600 million to acquire half of Michael Jackson's catalog, according to news reports, as music rights continues to drive deal making across the media sector.

Why it matters: A purchase that size would likely make it the richest music catalog deal ever and is proof that certain artists can still command sky-high valuations.

Details: The agreement includes a 50% stake in Jackson's recording music and publishing catalogs, according to Billboard, which first reported the news. Billboard said Sony has agreed to pay "at least $600 million," making the total value of the catalog worth more than $1.2 billion. Several other news outlets confirmed the agreement.

  • Included in the deal are some of Jackson's biggest hits like "Beat It" and "Bad," as well as his publishing assets that were part of Jackson's catalog with Mijac Music, the New York Times reported.
  • Not included in the sale are Jackson-related content like the Broadway musical "MJ," Cirque du Soleil's Jackson-themed shows, and an in-the-works biopic starring Jaafar Jackson, the NYT added.

By the numbers: The purchase would make Sony the owner of the two most expensive catalog buys. It acquired Bruce Springstein's catalog for $550 million in 2021.

Zoom in: Sony has an extensive history with the King of Pop, given Jackson's longtime association with Sony's Epic Records label.

  • Sony did not immediately return a call for comment.
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