BMG announces it has signed a binding agreement to acquire Sanctuary Records from Universal Music Group. The proposed sale, which is subject to regulatory approval by the European Commission (EC), is the latest in a series of divestments mandated by the EC, following Universal’s purchase of EMI.
BMG CEO Hartwig Masuch said, "We are delighted to have won the opportunity to work with the exceptional line-up of artists in the Sanctuary catalog. We have made no secret of our ambition to create a new force in the music industry focused on delivering service and revenue to artists. We believe this deal will be good news for those artists, good news for our partners particularly in the independent sector and good news for the music industry as a whole."
The Sanctuary catalog includes over 170,000 recordings from such legendary labels as Bronze, Creole, Immediate, Jet, Transatlantic, Trojan, Sugarhill, Pye and Solar. Sanctuary's catalog also includes 19 of Black Sabbath's albums, as well as releases from fellow hard rockers Motörhead, Iron Maiden, Bruce Dickinson and Megadeth. The catalog also contains Reggae stars from the legendary Trojan Records label, such as Toots and the Maytals, Desmond Dekker, Lee "Scratch" Perry and selected Bob Marley recordings as well. Punk greats The Damned, X-Ray Spex, Sham 69 and The Fall are also under the Sanctuary umbrella, as well as releases from The Kinks, Uriah Heep, Jonathan Richman, Donovan, Status Quo, Petula Clark, Grandmaster Flash, The Sugarhill Gang and many, many more.
The agreement to buy Sanctuary is the second BMG-UMG deal in the wake of Universal's acquisition of EMI. In December, BMG announced it had agreed in principle to buy the Mute Records catalog of recordings from DepecheMode, Erasure, Moby and Nick Cave.