Sony Music Group has agreed to pay $600 million for 50 percent of Michael Jackson’s publishing and recorded masters’ catalogue.
This deal is set to make Jackson’s catalogue valuation, the largest ever for a musician. According to Billboard, Sony’s deal with the Michael Jackson estate does not include royalties from the Broadway play and other theatrical productions featuring Jackson’s music.
Billboard reports that the current deal according to sources includes non-Jackson-authored songs in his Mijac publishing catalogue. These include the approximately 250-song Sly and the Family Stone publishing catalogue as well as iconic songs written and/or performed by Jerry Lee Lewis, Jackie Wilson, Curtis Mayfield, Ray Charles, Percy Sledge, and Dion.
“Sources indicate that the Sony deal also leaves in place Primary Wave’s stake, which is believed to be about 10 percent of Jackson’s publishing assets,” Billboard noted.
Billboard estimated in February of 2023 that the late artist’s estate which includes ownership of master recordings, publishing for Jackson’s share of his songs, his Mijac publishing catalogue, and revenue from merchandise and royalties from theatrical shows featuring Jackson’s music earns the late artist about $75 million annually.
Jackson’s recording and publishing assets alone rake in $47.2 million, and Mijac does about $5 million to $8 million annually.
According to Luminate, Sales and streams of Jackson’s music grew steadily from 1.07 million album equivalent units in 2020 to 1.47 million in 2023 — a growth of 37 percent over those three years. These numbers outpaced the overall U.S. music market for album consumption units, which grew 22.9 percent during that time, Billboard said.
Stats outside the United States revealed that Jackson’s music consumption grew 38.3 percent to 6.5 billion on-demand streams in 2023 from 4.7 billion streams in 2021. Next year, a Jackson biopic called Michael will be released. This is likely to boost the consumption of his music and increase revenue inflow for his estate and other rights holder.