BROOKFIELD AND PRIMARY WAVE MUSIC ENTER INTO $2 BILLION
Brookfield To Buy Minority Stake in Primary Wave Music
Commitment of $1.7 Billion From Brookfield
To Fund A Permanent Capital Vehicle Focused On Acquiring Music Rights From
The World’s Most Iconic Musicians
Creative Artists Agency (CAA) To Take A Minority Strategic Stake In Primary Wave Music
NEW YORK, NY (October 6, 2022) – Primary Wave Music and Brookfield Asset Management Inc. (“Brookfield”) today announced a strategic partnership whereby Brookfield will buy a significant minority interest in Primary Wave and provide an additional $1.7 billion capital funding commitment, in a deal valued in excess of $2 billion. An initial acquisition of over $700 million of iconic music rights from the company’s fund 1 and fund 2 will go into Primary Wave’s new permanent vehicle. With over $300 million worth of deals previously finalized year-to-date and another $600 million of pending transactions expected to be completed by year-end, Primary Wave – the leading publisher of iconic and legendary music in the world – continues to dominate the independent publishing space as a partner of choice. It was also announced today that leading entertainment and sports agency, Creative Artists Agency (CAA), will become a strategic partner and minority shareholder in Primary Wave. Brookfield and CAA, with the continued involvement of funds managed by Oaktree Capital Management, L.P. (“Oaktree”), will provide unique financial, creative, and global relationships to the music powerhouse.
Primary Wave’s management team will continue to control the company and will invest a majority of the Brookfield funds into the permanent capital vehicle through continued acquisition of music IP, creating a long-term vehicle holding company to leverage its extensive marketing, branding, digital strategy, and content creation teams to partner with artists. Primary Wave’s catalog of music already consists of over 800 Top-10 singles, more than 400 #1 hits, and some of the most legendary names in music, including Prince, Bob Marley, Whitney Houston, James Brown, Stevie Nicks, Ray Charles, Smokey Robinson, Bing Crosby, Def Leppard, Boston, Burt Bacharach, Olivia Newton-John, and Sun Records, among many others. The new funding from Brookfield, as well as their assistance on future growth initiatives and transaction structuring, will strengthen Primary Wave’s financial positioning as brand manager of legendary and iconic songs.
Primary Wave has several projects nearing completion, including the Whitney Houston biopic I Wanna Dance With Somebody; the James Brown A&E docu-series Say It Loud; the recently announced Melissa Etheridge off-Broadway production; the expansion of the Sun Diner; as well as the Sun Records podcast Midnight at the Sun Diner, and more.
“We are thrilled to deliver a comprehensive capital solution to Larry and the team at Primary Wave to support their continued acquisition of the world’s most iconic music IP,” said Angelo Rufino, Managing Partner, Brookfield. “Strong secular growth trends, scarcity value of assets and the continued penetration of music in new forms of content delivery underpin this significant commitment to the asset class.”
“Brookfield is among the most intelligent and well financed deal-makers in the world,” says Larry Mestel, CEO & Founder of Primary Wave Music. “What separates them from every other financially oriented investor of their size is their creativity, long-term horizon and ability to help scale unique businesses with operational expertise in addition to capital. The addition of the CAA team to the Primary Wave family provides the artistic, creative, relationship and content-creation clout unheard of in the music publishing space.”
Allen & Company LLC acted as financial advisor to Primary Wave and Paul Hastings LLP served as legal advisor in connection with the transaction. Paul, Weiss represented Brookfield. CAA was represented by Kirkland & Ellis LLP.
ABOUT PRIMARY WAVE
The Home of Legends.
Primary Wave Music is the leading independent publisher of iconic and legendary music in the world. The company is home to some of the most iconic songwriters, artists, and record labels across the history of recorded music including Sun Records, Bob Marley, Prince, Stevie Nicks, James Brown, Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons, Smokey Robinson, Whitney Houston, Burt Bacharach, Bing Crosby, Luther Vandross, Olivia Newton-John, Ray Charles, Aerosmith, Def Leppard, America, War, Gerry Goffin, Traveling Wilburys (Bob Dylan), Robbie Robertson, Teddy Pendergrass, Count Basie, Sly & The Family Stone, Boston, Alice Cooper, Paul Anka, Boy George and Culture Club, Allee Willis, Leon Russell, Paul Rodgers, Free, Toots & The Maytals, Steve Cropper, Martina McBride, Glenn Gould, Air Supply, Jeff Porcaro (TOTO), Holly Knight, Jim Peterik, Alice In Chains, Godsmack, Disturbed, Devo, Donny Hathaway, Nicky Chinn, David Malloy, Even Stevens, Julian Casablancas (The Strokes), Noel Hogan (Cranberries), Dan Wilson, Mike Scott (Waterboys), Chris Isaak, KT Tunstall, Patrick Leonard, Sturken & Rogers, Gin Blossoms, Steve Kipner, Matt Redman, and many more. The songs represented by Primary Wave include over 800 Top 10 singles, and over 400 #1 hits. Throughout the company’s 16-year existence, Primary Wave Music has embraced an entrepreneurial spirit, offering, and executing proactive one-of-a-kind ideas, unique services, and marketing campaigns for our artists. Primary Wave has earned a stellar reputation for being forward thinking and re-introducing classic artists and their music into the modern marketplace as well as nurturing young talent to become legends themselves. This success is based upon our team of seasoned and creative executives collaboratively working together closely with our artists as partners. As a company, we strive for excellence in the pursuit of iconic artists and catalogs that not only reflect great artistry, but impact and influence culture.
Brookfield Asset Management Inc. (NYSE: BAM, TSX: BAM.A) is a leading global alternative asset manager with over $750 billion of assets under management across real estate, infrastructure, renewable power and transition, private equity and credit. Brookfield owns and operates long-life assets and businesses, many of which form the backbone of the global economy. Utilizing its global reach, access to large-scale capital and operational expertise, Brookfield offers a range of alternative investment products to investors around the world—including public and private pension plans, endowments and foundations, sovereign wealth funds, financial institutions, insurance companies and private wealth investors. For more information, please visit our website at www.brookfield.com
ABOUT CREATIVE ARTISTS AGENCY
Creative Artists Agency (CAA) is a leading entertainment and sports agency, with global expertise in filmed and live entertainment, digital media, publishing, sponsorship sales and endorsements, brand consulting, media finance, consumer investing, fashion, trademark licensing, and philanthropy. Distinguished by its culture of collaboration and exceptional client service, CAA’s diverse workforce identifies, innovates, and amplifies opportunities for the people and organizations that shape culture and inspire the world. Named Most Valuable Sports Agency by Forbes for eight consecutive years, CAA represents more than 3,000 of the world’s top athletes in football, baseball, basketball, hockey, and soccer, in addition to coaches, on-air broadcasters, and sports personalities and works in the areas of broadcast rights, corporate marketing initiatives, social impact, and sports properties for sales and sponsorship opportunities.
Founded in 1975, CAA is headquartered in Los Angeles, and has offices in New York, Nashville, Memphis, Chicago, Miami, London, Munich, Geneva, Stockholm, Shanghai, and Beijing, among other locations globally. For more information, please visit www.caa.com.
Oaktree is a leader among global investment managers specializing in alternative investments,
with $159 billion in assets under management as of June 30, 2022. The firm emphasizes an opportunistic, value-oriented, and risk-controlled approach to investments in credit, private equity, real assets, and listed equities. The firm has over 1,000 employees and offices in 20 cities worldwide. For additional information, please visit Oaktree’s website at http://www.oaktreecapital.com/.