Believe buys 25% stake in French indie label Play Two for around $14 million

J.Godin - Play Two (left), S.Duclos - Play Two (middle), R. Vivien - Believe (right)

Paris-headquartered Believe has acquired a 25% stake in Play Two, one of France’s leading independent labels.

Believe said today (November 3) that the deal would accelerate the digital growth of Play Two, which remains a subsidiary of the TF1 group.

Believe didn’t disclose a price for the deal, but did say: “The transaction values Play Two at just under €50 million on a 100% basis.”

As a result, it’s fair to assume that, for a 25% stake, Believe paid around €12.5 million (approximately USD $14.5 million).

Believe said in a media release announcing the deal that “Play Two will now benefit from the whole range of Believe’s services, particularly in terms of distribution”.

The two founders of the label, Sébastien Duclos and Julien Godin, will remain in charge as managers.

As part of the agreement, says Believe, a strategic partnership has been agreed. Believe said in a statement: “Play Two will be able to leverage the technological innovation and digital expertise which are at the very core of Believe’s business model to accelerate the development of audiences and monetization of its artists on the digital markets in France and abroad. Synergies will be generated between the live show production structure of Play Two and the unit of Believe (Live Affair) and between the B2B / Brand content structures: Music Lab For Brand for Play Two and the Branding department of Believe.”

Play Two artists such as Gims, Vitaa, Hatik, Anne Sila, Vincent Niclo, Tayc, Camelia Jordana, Squeezie, Julien Clerc, and Gaëtan Roussel will add to Believe’s distribution roster.

Play Two founders Sébastien Duclos and Julien Godin said: “This partnership with Believe is another important step in the growth of Play Two. We have known the Believe teams for a long time and share with Denis [CEO of Believe] and Romain [General Manager of Believe France] the same entrepreneurial culture as well as a common vision of the future of the music and entertainment industry.

“With the TF1 Group, which is an exceptional partner in the development of our structure, we now form a new team with Believe, perfectly adapted to the challenges of this rapidly changing market.”

“I am confident that we will work together to accelerate Play Two’s digital transition and open up new music segments to digital with our shared expertise and innovation.”

Romain Vivien, Believe

Romain Vivien, General Manager of Believe France, said: “I am delighted to associate Believe with the No.1 French independent label, founded and run by Sébastien and Julien, two talented entrepreneurs with a long track record of success, and at the same time with the number one French media group TF1, which has enabled Play Two to accelerate its development and become a key player in the market.

“I am confident that we will work together to accelerate Play Two’s digital transition and open up new music segments to digital with our shared expertise and innovation.”

Believe released its Q3 fiscal results today for the three months to end of September.

Topline revenues at the company in the quarter were up 26.8% YoY on an organic basis, to €144 million.

Believe’s group revenues in the first nine months of 2021 weighed in at €404 million, up 28.9% YoY on an organic basis.

Believe listed on the Paris Euronext stock exchange in June.

The company currently carries a market cap of €1.716 billion, or approximately $2 billion.Music Business Worldwide