Blackstone is buying eOne Music from Hasbro in $385m cash deal

Chris Taylor

Financial giant Blackstone is about to acquire a big bundle of music rights.

Hasbro has confirmed it has entered into a definitive agreement to sell Entertainment One Music (eOne Music) to entities controlled by Blackstone for USD $385 million in cash.

The transaction is expected to close in the second or third quarter of 2021.

The deal will add to a portfolio of music companies under Blackstone that also include music rights org SESAC.

MBW has long predicted that Hasbro would end up offloading eOne Music, after Hasbro acquired the operation as part of a $4bn buyout of Entertainment One in August 2019.

Assets owned by eOne Music include the Death Row Records catalog and Dualtone Music Group, in addition to production music house Audio Network, which eOne acquired for approximately $215m in April 2019.

Subsequent to the closing of the transaction, eOne Music will operate as a separate business unit headed by its current Global President, Chris Taylor, and will “focus on building a creator-first music brand with global scale and expertise”.

Brian Goldner, Hasbro’s Chairman and CEO, said: “This transaction will ensure that eOne Music is well positioned to unlock great opportunities for its many talented artists and partners, as Hasbro continues to focus on the core strategic elements of our Brand Blueprint to further strengthen our position as a purpose‐led play and entertainment company. On behalf of the Board and Hasbro management, I want to recognize the strong leadership of Chris Taylor and the entire eOne Music organization.”

“We want the creative community to know that we are focused on making sure that this only benefits them and the work we do together.”

Chris Taylor, eOne Music

Chris Taylor said: “I’m excited to continue to lead and grow this exceptional business. We want the creative community to know that we are focused on making sure that this only benefits them and the work we do together. I also want to thank Brian Goldner and Hasbro for their support and partnership.”

As part of the Blackstone transaction, Entertainment One Canada Limited will sell its Canadian music division.

J.P. Morgan is acting as exclusive financial advisor to Hasbro on the transaction, Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP, Mayer Brown International LLP and Stikeman Elliott LLP are acting as legal counsel to Hasbro and Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP are acting as legal counsel to Entertainment One Canada Limited.Music Business Worldwide