Because Group has acquired from Warner Music Group a slew of catalogs from artists that were on London Records, including Bananarama, Fine Young Cannibals, Bronski Beat, Orbital and Happy Mondays. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
The deal came about due to the divestiture agreement between the major and Merlin/Impala, in exchange for getting their approval of the indie organization to acquire Parlophone so that it could clear EU regulatory scrutiny. While the Because Group deal includes over 50 artists catalogs, it doesn’t include London artists like New Order or Joy Division, among other acts.
According to the announcement, the acquired catalogs will be run separately from Because Music U.K., under the brand name London Music Stream. The London Records brand is separately owned by the Universal Music Group.
"I am delighted to have the opportunity to work with a talented group of artists whom I have long admired, and whose music remains relevant today," Because Group founder Emmanual de Buretel said in a statement. "It is a great honour to be in a position to build on the legacy of the amazing creative vision established by Roger Ames and Tracy Bennett more than 25 years ago, and take London to a new level. The catalogue includes some incredible hit songs which we intend to revitalize in the digital age."
In addition, the acquired repertoire also includes the catalogs of Jimmy Sommerville, Goldie, East 17, and Shakespears Sister, among others.
"The ambition for this company is first to optimize the catalogue of the London artists on a worldwide basis using the resources of Because Music, and then to take the label back to its glory days with fresh ideas and talented people, all while using new opportunities on offer in terms of music, creativity, technology and data," de Buretel added.
Earlier in the year, Because also acquired the catalogs of ten French artists including Mano Negra, Rita Mitsouko, Camille and Les Negresses Vertes as part of the Warner divestment process.
Sources say that WMG is expected to finish and close out the divestment process by the end of the year.