It’s been a seemingly bumpy 18 months for Tempo Music Investments, the New York-based portfolio company of Providence Equity Partners, since it launched in Q4 2019.
The fund, a partner of Warner Music Group, has accumulated over a billion dollars to spend… but in a music biz of near-daily catalog acquisition announcements, has been a conspicuously quiet player to date.
(So much so, Merck Mercuriadis, CEO of rival Hipgnosis Songs Fund, told MBW earlier this year: “I’ve never once felt Tempo in literally any of the deals we’ve made.”)
And in January, Tempo’s CEO, Sherrese Clarke Soares – a Morgan Stanley veteran – abruptly exited her position at the company.
Now, four months on, Tempo is making new moves, with a different CEO – and the announcement of a handful of acquisitions that live up to its self-billing as “an investment platform for premium music rights”.
This fresh spate of deals include the purchase of music catalogs from Wiz Khalifa and Florida Georgia Line, as well as songwriter Brett James and singer/songwriter Mia Fieldes.
In addition, Tempo has acquired catalogs from producers including the Grammy-winning Philip Lawrence (“24k Magic” & “Uptown Funk“ Bruno Mars; “All I Ask” Adele) and Frank Ocean collaborator Malay.
The new CEO of Tempo is Josh Empson, who has been at Providence Equity Partners since 2013, and whose company bio says he “led the formation” of Tempo in 2019.
According to Empson’s Linkedin profile, he’s been in place at the Chief Exec of Tempo since the close of last year.
“In the 18 months since Tempo was launched, we’ve quietly been making strategic acquisitions from some of today’s top songwriting talent,” said Empson in a new media release announcing the latest acquisitions.
“Today, I’m excited to announce that Tempo has built a diverse, best-in-class portfolio, with significant investible capital to keep growing.”
“In the 18 months since Tempo was launched, we’ve quietly been making strategic acquisitions from some of today’s top songwriting talent.”
Josh Empson, Tempo Music Investments
Rob Walker, Tempo Senior Advisor, added: “Tempo has quickly become a leading investment platform with a diverse range of catalogs that allows artists the opportunity to continue to participate in the business of their catalog moving forward.
“We are musician-friendly and innovative in the way we approach the music. We are thrilled to be partnering with a myriad of talent and support their art.”
Wiz Khalifa commented: “I’m excited to partner with Tempo Music. Their approach to artists and music is impressive as well as collaborative. I’m looking forward to our continued growth.”
“Tempo’s approach to artists and music is impressive as well as collaborative.”
Shortly after launching in 2019, Tempo announced the acquisition of copyrights from award-winning songwriters Jeff Bhasker, Shane McAnally and Ben Rector.
Bhasker has won Producer of the Year at the Grammys, and worked with the likes of Kanye West, Harry Styles, and Dua Lipa.
McAnally is a three-time Grammy Award-winner, while independent artist Rector has licensed music across numerous TV shows, national ad campaigns and movie trailers.Music Business Worldwide