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From BMG’s alliance with investment firm Pimco, to Sir Lucian Grainge’s 2022 message: It’s MBW’s Weekly Round-Up

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Anyone following MBW’s coverage of the global music business over the past 12 months will surely have noticed something:

Barely a week now goes by without attention-grabbing news about either a major music rights deal, or a new, deep pocketed player entering the music rights acquisition space.

This week brought news of both.Today (January 14), we learned that investment giant Pimco has struck an alliance with BMG to jointly buy music copyrights, and the significance of the firm entering the fray is immense.

That’s because Pimco has a portfolio of assets worth $2.21 TRILLION, more than investment giants KKR (around $234 billion), Apollo Global Management  (around $455 billion) and Blackstone (around $649 billion) combined.

We also learned this week that the acquisitive Primary Wave Music Publishing has spent a collective $60 million on stakes in the catalogs of Paul Rodgers, and Gerry Beckley and Dewey Bunnell of America.

According to the Wall Street Journal, both deals, valued at $20 million and $40 million respectively, took place at the end of 2021 – a year in which MBW estimates, as reported on Monday (January 10), that at least $5 billion was spent on music rights acquisitions.

In addition, as per the WSJ, Primary Wave, which itself has over $1 billion to spend on music rights, “is gearing up to spend $500 million to $600 million” this year.

Elsewhere this week, Warner Music Group acquired prominent African music distributor Africori, while Universal Music Group Chairman and CEO Sir Lucian Grainge sent a memo to UMG’s workforce to mark the new year.

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