Elevation Partners, the private equity firm co-founded by U2 frontman Bono, has its eyes set on the music business, and now has a management executive ready to oversee its investments in the industry:
Elevation Partners, the private equity firm co-founded by U2 frontman Bono, has its eyes set on the music business, and now has a management executive ready to oversee its investments in the industry: Les Bider.
Bider, the former chairman and CEO of music publishing powerhouse Warner/Chappell, has been tapped to serve as Elevation's executive-in-residence.
In his new role, Bider will assist the firm assessing music-related investment opportunities and may become involved in managing its music assets.
"His more than two decades of experience in music publishing will be invaluable as we pursue initiatives in music," Roger McNamee, Managing Director and co-founder of Elevation said in a statement.
The move immediately establishes Elevation as a player in chasing a variety of music assets looking for an investor and/or buyer, particularly in the music publishing business. A number of big name publishing houses could be in play in the coming months, including Bider's old home Warner/Chappell, and Bertelsmann's publishing arm BMG Music publishing and Windswept.
Elevation has $1.9 billion of capital to be invested over the next several years and is looking to park the money in media and entertainment assets. The firm is particularly interested in intellectual property and content-oriented businesses in need of financing partners to help drive growth and profitability.
Bider declined to name specific targets the firm is looking at, but says Elevation has not ruled out any investments on the basis of their size.
"We're willing to take a look at all sizes," says Bider. "It depends on the opportunity. We wouldn't discard anything because it is too large or too small."
Under Bider's watch Warner/Chappell transformed from a $30 million a year business to one generating over half a billion dollars a year. He left the company in February of last year, after almost 25 years.