Bruce Springsteen sells his music catalog in massive deal
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Bruce Springsteen has sold his music rights to Sony Music Entertainment in what may well be the biggest deal ever for a single artist’s work, according to two people briefed on the deal.
No public announcement was made about the transaction, which closed in recent weeks, and the precise terms were unknown. But its value could exceed $ 500 million, according to the two people, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the case.
Representatives for Sony and Springsteen declined to comment on Wednesday evening. News of the sale was first reported by Billboard.
The arrangement, which has been gossiped in music industry circles for weeks, features both Springsteen’s catalog of recorded music and his work as a songwriter. This will give Sony ownership of the entire collection of classic Springsteen songs like “Born to Run”, “Born in the USA” and “Blinded by the Light”.
This is the latest and biggest mega-real in what has been a frothy couple of years in which investors, big music companies, and private equity firms – drawn by the streaming boom and the promise of growth in music revenues for years to come – have poured billions of dollars to purchase song catalogs.
Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, Stevie Nicks, Shakira, Neil Young and many other stars have sold some or all of their work for prices in the hundreds of millions. Dylan’s deal, with Universal Music Publishing Group last year, was for his writing only and was valued at over $ 300 million.
At a Sony investor relations meeting in May, Rob Stringer, chief executive of Sony Music, said the company had spent $ 1.4 billion on acquisitions over the previous six months, a period that included the Simon agreement as well as others for entire companies like AWAL, which provides services to independent artists.
Springsteen, 72, worked for Columbia Records, a unit of Sony Music, for the entirety of his five-decade career, and has long controlled the rights to his recordings. He also owns the copyrights to his compositions and essentially acts as his own music publisher, although since 2017 his compositions have been managed by Universal.
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