It’s been a few weeks in the making but now Pershing Square owns 10 perfent of Universal Music. Pershing Square Holdings, a US-based special purpose acquisition company, is run by the billionaire Bill Ackman. In the beginning of the month, the company bought 7.1 percent of UMG from it’s majority-owner, Vivendi. Today, Pershing Square bought another 2.9 percent of UMG, bringing up the total ownership to 10 percent, according to Music Business Worldwide.
Pershing Square bought 7.1 percent with $2.8 billion and the 2.9 percent for $1.149 billion, a total of $3.949 billion. In July, Ackman’s other firm, Pershing Square Tontine Holdings, was supposed to buy 10 percent of UMG for $4 billion, but the deal ultimately fell through.
For now Vivendi is still the majority-owner of UMG. Vivendi is expected to list 60 percent of the company on the Amsterdam stock exchange on September 21. Combining the recent sale and the upcoming listing, Vivendi, a french company, will sell 90% of UMG in only 18 months.
In other news, legendary rock band Aerosmith just announced that they are bringing their entire catalogue to UMG in 2022. This will include their most famous albums to date, but also every future release made by the band, including merchandise sales and others. The catalogue also includes the personal archives of Steven Tyler, Joe Perry, Tom Hamilton and Brad Whitford.