Sony Music Group has finalized a monumental deal to acquire half of Michael Jackson's publishing and recorded masters catalog, with the transaction valuing Jackson's music assets at over $1.2 billion, potentially reaching up to $1.5 billion. This valuation positions the agreement as possibly the highest ever for a musician's assets, surpassing the $1.2 billion valuation currently sought by Queen. Sony's purchase, estimated at a minimum of $600 million, primarily covers Jackson's publishing rights and master recordings but excludes royalties from Broadway and other theatrical productions featuring his music.
The deal also encompasses non-Jackson-authored songs within his Mijac publishing catalog, including works by Sly & the Family Stone, Jerry Lee Lewis, and other iconic artists. According to estimates, Jackson's estate annually generates about $75 million, with his music witnessing significant growth in both sales and streaming, particularly outside the United States where his popularity continues to soar.
Over the years, Sony's financial dealings with the Jackson estate have exceeded $2 billion, including significant payments for Sony/ATV, EMI Music Publishing, and now, this latest transaction, marking a new milestone in the partnership between Sony and the Jackson estate.