BMG buys Sanctuary Records for around £40m

BMG has signed a binding agreement to acquire Sanctuary Records from Universal Music. The deal is believed to be worth around £40m and covers 170,000 copyrights.

The proposed sale, which is subject to regulatory approval by the European Commission (EC), forms part of a series of divestments following Universal’s purchase of EMI Recorded Music.

BMG CEO Hartwig Masuch said, “We are delighted to have won the opportunity to work with the exceptional line-up of artists in the Sanctuary catalogue. We have made no secret of our ambition to create a new force in the music industry focused on delivering service and revenue to artists. We believe this deal will be good news for those artists, good news for our partners particularly in the independent sector and good news for the music industry as a whole.”

The Sanctuary catalogue includes over 170,000 recordings from such legendary labels as Bronze, Creole, Immediate, Jet, Transatlantic, Trojan, Sugarhill, Pye and Solar, among them:

– Black Sabbath – rights to 19 albums, including Paranoid, Master of Reality;

– Motörhead – albums including Ace of Spades, No Sleep ‘til Hammersmith, Overkill with cumulative worldwide sales of over 30m;

– Iron Maiden – US rights to their first 13 albums including The Number Of The Beast and No Prayer For The Dying;

– The Kinks (pictured) – 17 of their albums and hits such as ‘You Really Got Me’, ‘All Day And All Of The Night’, ‘Waterloo Sunset’, ‘Sunny Afternoon’, ‘Lola’ and ‘Dedicated Follower of Fashion’;

– Uriah Heep, including albums such as Look At Yourself, The Magician’s Birthday, Salisbury which together have sold over 30m copies;

– Metal legends including Bruce Dickinson, Venom, Helloween, Girlschool, Magnum and Megadeth;

– Reggae stars from the Trojan Records catalogue such as Desmond Dekker, Lee Scratch Perry and Duke Reid;

– Punk anthems from The Damned, X-Ray Spex, Sham 69, Jonathan Richman, The Fall and The Sex Pistols (the Spunk album);

– Folk heroes: Donovan, Bert Jansch, The Dubliners, Pentangle, Lindisfarne and Steeleye Span;

– Status Quo, Lonnie Donegan, Petula Clark, Mungo Jerry, Joe Brown, The Searchers and The Small Faces (UK only); and Grandmaster Flash, The Sugarhill Gang, Shalamar and the Whispers (various territories).

The agreement to buy Sanctuary is the second BMG has struck arising out of Universal’s divestments post-EMI buyout.

In December 2012 BMG announced it had agreed in principle to buy from Universal the Mute Records catalogue of recordings from the likes of Depeche Mode, Erasure, Moby and Nick Cave.Music Business Worldwide

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