Whoa: Warner Music Group is going public (again)

Well, less than two months into 2020, it looks like we might already have the biggest news of the year: Warner Music Group has just announced its intention to IPO.

This won’t be the first time that WMG goes public: the firm traded on the New York Stock Exchange before becoming a private entity in 2011, when Len Blavatnik and his Access Industries bought the company for $3.3bn.

Now, Blavatnik and Access have decided to take Warner back to the stock market.

Why? Try the fact that WMG rival Universal Music Group recently locked in a whopping company valuation in excess of $33bn thanks to its agreement to sell 10% of its company to a Tencent-led consortium.

Blavatnik must know that, in comparative terms, WMG is now worth many multiples of that $3.3bn he paid nine years ago.

(Much) more to come, we’re sure, but for now read the just-released WMG press release below for details:


NEW YORK, New York, February 6, 2020—Warner Music Group Corp. (“Warner Music Group”) today announced that it has filed a registration statement on Form S-1 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) for a proposed initial public offering (“IPO”) of its common stock.  The shares of common stock to be sold in this offering are proposed to be sold by certain of Warner Music Group’s stockholders.  The number of shares of common stock to be offered and the price range for the proposed offering have not yet been determined.

Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse and Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC are acting as joint bookrunning managers for the offering.  When available, copies of the preliminary prospectus relating to the offering may be obtained from: Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC, Attention: Prospectus Department, 180 Varick Street, 2nd Floor, New York, NY 10014; Credit Suisse Securities (USA) LLC, Attention: Prospectus Department, Eleven Madison Avenue, 3rd floor, New York, NY 10010, by telephone at (800) 221-1037, or by email at usa.prospectus@credit-suisse.com; or Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC, Attention: Prospectus Department, 200 West Street, New York, NY 10282, by telephone at (866) 471-2526, or by email at prospectus-ny@ny.email.gs.com.

A registration statement relating to these securities has been filed with the SEC but has not yet become effective.  These securities may not be sold nor may offers to buy be accepted prior to the time the registration statement becomes effective.  This press release does not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy securities, and shall not constitute an offer, solicitation or sale in any jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of that jurisdiction.

Music Business Worldwide

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