Michael Jackson Estate Close to Catalog Sale

For the family of Michael Jackson, the news of an upcoming catalog sale must be, well, a thriller.

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Puns aside, Variety reports, citing three sources, that Jackson’s estate is in the “process of selling half of its interests in the legendary singer’s music catalog in a deal in the $800 million-$900 million range.”

Details are still not yet clear but the outlet reports that Sony, with another possible backer, are working to acquire half of the estate’s interests in his publishing, recorded music revenues, the Broadway musical and upcoming biopic (which is slated to star Jackson’s nephew Jaafar).

According to Variety, the sale would be the biggest deal to date among the many recent catalog sales from big-name artists. Artists who have recently sold their catalogs include Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Justin Bieber, Dr. Dre, the Killers and more. Springsteen’s catalog sold for reportedly $600 million in a deal with Sony while Dylan’s sold for approximately $150 million.

Jackson’s music is one of the most financially lucrative in popular music. His 1982 album, Thriller, is one of the two biggest-selling LPs of all time. It was also the first album to be certified platinum 30 times. Jackson died in 2009 at the age of 50 years old.

This isn’t the first time Sony and the Jackson estate have done business since the King of Pop’s death nearly 15 years ago. Writes Variety, “In 2016 Sony Corp. reached a $750 million agreement with the estate to acquire the Jackson estate’s 50% stake in their joint venture, Sony/ATV Music Publishing, which they had formed in 1995. In 2018 Sony revealed in an earnings report that as part of its $2.3 billion acquisition of EMI Music Publishing, it had acquired the Jackson estate’s 25.1% stake in that company for $287.5 million.”

Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImage

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