Scooter Braun’s Ithaca Holdings sold the master rights to Taylor Swift’s first six studio albums to an anonymous investment fund less than 18 months after their acquisition.
It is according to a Variety reportwhich sets the selling price north of $300 million.
This effectively means that Braun and Ithaca have acquired Big Machine Label Group — and everything that wasn’t a Taylor Swift record in that company — for a negligible sum.
That’s because Ithaca acquired all of Big Machine (including those six Taylor Swift masters) for a whopping sum. estimated at $330 million in June 2019.
Ithaca is minority-owned by private equity giant Carlyle Group. And in the history of investments made by Carlyle, the Swift masters have perhaps caused the most headaches.
Those headaches included Swift’s public threat to re-record your masters for commercial exploitation — something she was supposed to be contractually free to do as of this month (November 2020).
Additionally, Swift had publicly said she was deliberately preventing Ithaca to secure synchronizations for his recorded music.
In order to execute any sync deal for a Swift hit, Ithaca would also have had to obtain approval from the owner of Swift’s music publishing rights.
Swift said Billboard last December:[E]Every week, we receive about ten synchronization requests to use Shake in an advertisement or Empty space in a movie trailer, and we say no to every one of them.
Swift added: “The reason I’m re-recording my music next year is because I want my music to live on. I want it to be in movies, I want it to be in commercials. But I don’t want it only if I own it.
The bad blood surrounding Braun and Ithaca’s purchase of Swift’s Masters (via Big Machine) erupted on June 30 last year – the same day Braun and Big Machine boss Scott Borchetta announced the $330 million acquisitionwhich included Swift’s multi-platinum studio albums including Taylor Swift, Fearless, Speak Now, Red, 1989 and Reputation.
On the same day, Swift, whose father was a minority shareholder in Big Machine, claimed on social media: “I learned of the purchase of my masters by Scooter Braun as announced to the world. All I could think of was the relentless and manipulative bullying I suffered from him for years.
Braun then called on Swift to resolve the fallout after ‘numerous death threats’ directed to the music director’s family.The music industry around the world