European Commission on Tuesday gave Sony full access to works by Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga, and 250 Beatles songs, previously owned by Michael Jackson.
Commission’s decision will enable Sony to purchase 2 million songs from Jackson’s estate for $750 million and wins opposition by Warner Music and Impala, which argued that the purchase would give Sony too much influence in the industry.
The deal will give Sony full control of Sony/ATV, a music publishing company created 21 years ago through a joint venture that split ownership of the firm 50-50 between Sony and the pop superstar, who died in 2009.
Publishing rights are more important than they used to be given the explosion in digital streaming services that give consumers access to millions of tunes through a few taps of their smartphones. Songwriters and rights holders are paid publishing royalties when songs are played through these platforms.
The commission said Tuesday that the transaction will have “no negative impact on competition in any of the markets for recorded music and music publishing in the European Economic Area.”