Jacko Wheels, Deals to Avoid Bankruptcy
Fri, 14 Apr 2006 15:27:09
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Michael Jackson is dancing again -- this time along the edge of financial disaster. His moves are looking pretty good, at least in the short-term, as they may allow Jacko to stay in control of both his entertainment empire and his infamous Neverland Ranch. In a nutshell, The Gloved One has replaced an old loan with a new one. The catch? Sony Entertainment will be given a future opportunity to acquire 25 percent of the crown jewel in Jackson’s massive song publishing catalog: The Beatles.
Sony already shelled out $100 million in 1998 for half of the Beatles catalog, and they’re hungry for more. They’re happy to help Jackson keep afloat because if the star was forced to declare bankruptcy, his share in their jointly owned catalog could be auctioned off to a rival company. The entire catalog -- which also includes luminaries like Dylan and Elvis, and even a few collegiate fight songs -- is valued at approximately $1 billion.
Jacko has managed to find precarious financial footing despite selling somewhere around 300 million albums during a decades-long reign as one of the music industry’s most sought-after talents. For those who haven’t been keeping up, the last dozen years or so haven’t been so rosy, as Jackson has been plagued by declining sales and mounting legal costs in several notorious courtroom battles.
Jackson came under financial fire earlier this year when California’s labor commissioner slapped him with a fine for failing to pay employees at Neverland; to avoid further legal problems, Jackson paid hundreds of thousands of dollars in back salaries.
-- The ARTISTdirect Staff