Ackman-Led SPAC To Buy Into Universal Music Group For $4B
A special purpose acquisition company will acquire 10 per cent of Universal Music Group for around US$4 billion from French company Vivendi, valuing the record label at $42 billion, including debt.
Pershing Square Tontine Holdings Ltd is backed by billionaire Bill Ackman. Its 10 per cent holding comes after China’s Tencent Holdings Ltd. bought a 20 per cent equity stake in 2019.
Universal Music Group is the most successful record label in the world and the biggest rightsholder of music, with a dense catalogue that has increased in value following the boom in streaming. Current roster artists include regular chart-toppers Taylor Swift, Billie Eilish, Drake and U2.
In addition, UMG owns 3.37 per cent of Spotify – shares valued last month by Billboard to be worth north of US$2 billion.
“After the 20% equity stake acquired by the Consortium led by the Tencent group, the arrival of major American investors provides further evidence of UMG’s global success and attractiveness,” Vivendi said in a statement.
The deal is expected to close by September 15, at the latest.