It’s official: the UK-born talent management company known as James Grant Group has sold a majority stake in its business to private equity firm Trilantic.
MBW reported earlier this month that the two parties were close to finalizing a buyout deal, which valued JGG – today rebranded as YM&U – at between $140m and $160m (£110m+).
According to our sources, YM&U’s enterprise value did indeed land in the upper region of that ballpark.
In the end, Trilantic purchased a majority holding in YM&U – a stake which, according to our calculations, would have fetched over $100m.
The remainder of YM&U’s shares are being divided between its management team and its employees.
Earlier this month, YM&U acquired UK-based Machine Management, home to Clean Bandit, Years & Years and Mika. That deal came 18 months after it bought L.A-based Deckstar in a deal worth north of $20m.
Deckstar now forms the hub ofYM&U’s L.A-based music division, with management clients including Blink 182, Steve Aoki, Morrissey, Rancid, Bush and 311.
In 2012, YM&U acquired London-based Hall Or Nothing (The Script, Manic Street Preachers), while in October last year it swooped for 10 Management, home to Take That.
Other artists on YM&U’s roster today include James Arthur, Cheat Codes and Don Diablo.
YM&U has a roster of clients across sports, music and entertainment.
Its majority-acquisition by Trilantic Europe covers all of YM&U’s twelve trading entities: Deckstar, Furniss Lawton, Hall or Nothing, Impact Sports Management, James Grant, James Grant Management Inc., James Grant Music, James Grant Sport, Machine Management, OJK, Rabbit and Troika.
All divisions will be re-branded YM&U as from January 1st 2019 with the exception of Troika, which will retain its trading name for the foreseeable future.
Post-deal, YM&U’s executive team will remain in place and continue to run the Group.
“We are excited about the future of the Group and creating an environment where exceptional people want to express themselves whether they be clients or colleagues.”
Neil Rodford, YM&U
YM&U chief executive Neil Rodford, who also led JGG, commented, “We are delighted to join forces with Trilantic Europe, whose management team has the experience we require on both sides of the Atlantic, which made them the obvious choice for us as a management team.
“We look forward to working with our new partners on enhancing our services as we seek to grow materially in the coming months and years. We are excited about the future of the Group and creating an environment where exceptional people want to express themselves whether they be clients or colleagues.”
Trilantic Europe focuses on mid-market transactions, tailoring solutions for businesses using its expertise and operating knowledge to accelerate growth and enhance value creation.
“Few companies have the range of services and the professional expertise that YM&U can offer.”
Joe Cohen, Trilantic Europe
Joe Cohen, Trilantic Europe Partner, commented: “We have been impressed by the breadth and depth of YM&U’s business and its first-class provision of management and professional services in the world of sport, entertainment, film and music. Few companies have the range of services and the professional expertise that YM&U can offer.
“We look forward to working with management to expand the company’s services and to further grow YM&U both organically and by identifying acquisitions that share a common cultural fit and sector focus.”
Recent additions to YM&U include the football sports agency Impact SM, their clients include Harry Winks, Sean Dyche, Chris Hughton and Alex McCarthy; and London-based music management company Machine Management, which represents Clean Bandit, Years & Years and Mika.
The company broadly operates across four divisions, working with talent across Music, Sport and Entertainment (TV/film), as well as running in-house Professional Services, such as business management / accountancy operation OJK.
In addition, it works with online social ‘influencers’, comedians and authors.
YM&U’s clients in the entertainment world include UK TV stars such as Ant & Dec, Philip Schofield, Fearne Cotton, Holly Willoughby, Clare Balding and Emma Willis.
Via a recent merger with rival agency Troika, it also represents British TV presenter Graham Norton, in addition to Hollywood actor Michael Fassbender.
In sport, it represents the likes of ex-England soccer star (and now Derby County manager) Frank Lampard, Tottenham player Harry Winks and long-time USA player Clint Dempsey.Music Business Worldwide