Brookfield to acquire minority stake in music publisher Primary Wave

The deal, valued in excess of $2 billion, includes Brookfield providing a commitment of $1.7 billion.

  • Oaktree-backed talent agency Creative Artists Agency will become a strategic partner and minority shareholder in Primary Wave
  • Allen & Company LLC acted as financial advisor to Primary Wave on the deal
  • Primary Wave’s music catalog includes songs from iconic recording artists such as Prince, Bob Marley, Whitney Houston, James Brown, Stevie Nicks, Ray Charles and Smokey Robinson

Brookfield Asset Management has agreed to buy a “significant” minority stake in music publisher Primary Wave. The deal, valued in excess of $2 billion, includes Brookfield providing a commitment of $1.7 billion.

According to terms of the transaction, talent agency Creative Artists Agency, which is backed by Oaktree Capital Management, will become a strategic partner and minority shareholder in Primary Wave.

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 music catalog includes songs from iconic recording artists such as Prince, Bob Marley, Whitney Houston, James Brown, Stevie Nicks, Ray Charles and Smokey Robinson.

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.

“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 at Brookfield, in a statement. “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.”

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.

Brookfield Asset Management Inc has over $750 billion of assets under management across real estate, infrastructure, renewable power and transition, private equity and credit.

Founded in 1975, CAA is headquartered in Los Angeles.

Oaktree has $159 billion in assets under management as of June 30, 2022.