Sony is buying Believe Digital for up to $444m, says report (updated)

Last month, MBW told you that Sony Music was looking likely to buy music distributor Believe (formerly Believe Digital) for a nine-figure sum.

Today, news has emerged that the deal is reportedly nearly done, for a total price of between $355m and $444m (40bn – 50bn Yen).

According to Nikkei, Sony will receive a majority stake in Believe for the sale price.

[UPDATE: Believe boss Denis Ladegaillerie has called Nikkei’s report “untrue”.]

When MBW asked Believe founder Denis Ladegaillerie (pictured) if the company was for sale earlier this year, he said: “Believe has been profitable for six years, we don’t need [more] cash to support and develop the business.

“If we get an offer that we can’t refuse tomorrow, like anyone else, we would consider it, but it’s not been the case so far.”

Paris-born Believe Digital was founded in 2004, running both a global online distribution/services arm and an in-house record label, Believe Recordings.

The company significantly increased its distribution market share with the acquisition of TuneCore in April 2015.

After that purchase, Ladegaillerie told MBW that the combination of of Believe and Tunecore would generate an annual turnover in excess of US $250m (€232m).

In October last year, Believe acquired French independent distributor and label Naive for €10m ($12m).

Spotify investor TCV led a $60m investment into Believe in June 2015.Music Business Worldwide

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