HomeLatest NewsQueen's Music Catalog Sells to Sony for Over $1 Billion in Unprecedented...

Queen’s Music Catalog Sells to Sony for Over $1 Billion in Unprecedented Deal

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Sony Music has acquired the music catalog of legendary British rock band Queen in a deal valued at more than $1 billion.

The music trade magazine Hits published a report on Friday stating that Sony won a fight with other record companies to own Queen’s catalog. This was for PS1 billion ($1.2 billion). Variety confirmed that two sources had confirmed the deal.

Hits claims that the only money Sony won’t receive from the agreement is revenue generated by live performances. The founding members Brian May, Roger Taylor, and Adam Lambert continue to perform Queen with the singer Adam Lambert replacing the late frontman Freddie Mercury.

According to Hits, a second potential buyer who wanted Queen’s catalog bid $900 million. However, Sony was able to beat the winning bid.

The report stated that Sony is expected to complete the deal in “the next couple of weeks.”

Hollywood Records, a label owned by the Disney Music Group in the United States, and Canada, is the owner of the rights to all the recorded music from the band. Hollywood Records purchased Queen’s North American catalog after signing a distribution agreement with the band for $10 million in 1991.

DMG retains the rights to the North American territory of the band in perpetuity under the agreement with Sony. Some of the large royalties that Queen members received under DMG’s deal will now go to Sony.

Universal Music Group holds worldwide licensing rights for Hollywood Records’ Queen catalog through an agreement signed with DMG. Hits reports that Sony will receive those rights once the licensing agreement expires around 2026 or 27.

The billion-dollar purchase by Sony appears to be the largest music catalog sale ever, surpassing Bruce Springsteen’s previous record. Variety reported that Springsteen sold the catalog of his recorded music to Sony Music in 2021 for an estimated $600 million.

Bob Dylan sold his publishing rights for $400 million in 2020. Sony Music announced that in January 2022 it had acquired Dylan’s entire recorded music catalog. According to Variety, the deal was worth between $150 million and $200 million.

The amounts paid for these acquisitions are not publicly known.

Queen was formed in 1970 by Mercury, May, Taylor, and John Deacon. They became the most popular rock band in the world.

The band’s long list of hits includes “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Don’t Stop Me Now,” Under Pressure,” Another One Bites the Dust,” We Will Rock You,” “Somebody to Love,” and “We Are The Champions.”

Queen’s music sales and streaming increased in 2019 after the release of the Academy Award-winning Freddie Mercury Biopic “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

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