In 1985 Michael Jackson made one of the most savvy business deals in the history of the music industry when he purchased the ATV catalog after Paul McCartney made a sarcastic remark about music publishing. Jackson purchased the catalog for a mere 40 million then 10 years later, sold 50% of it to Sony for 100 million creating Sony/ATV forming a partnership with the label. That catalog has over a million copyrights including many of the hit songs by the Beatles which caused a riff between McCartney and Jackson as well as songs by Jackson himself, Elvis Presley and Sly and the Family Stone amongst others.
Sony has recently agreed to pay the estate of the late Michael Jackson $750 million for the Sony/ATV catalog. Jackson left 500 million in debt when he died in 2009 most of which has been settled with the sale of Jackson’s possessions, Movie deals and business deals. There is a remaining 20 million or so left to pay which will be deducted from the Sony payment. The balance will be left for Jackson’s children.
John Branca and John McClain, (a former music industry exec for A&M records) are the coexecutors of the Jackson estate, stated that the deal “further allows us to continue our efforts of maximizing the value of Michael’s estate for the benefit of his children.”Talk about a brilliant investment? The deal is subject to regulatory provisions and should close by the end of March.
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