Sony/ATV Music Publishing Cuts “Unprecedented” Direct Deal With Pandora [NYSE: P]
Pandora (NYSE:P) and music publishing giant Sony/ATV Music today announced a multi-year catalog licensing agreement. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the direct publishing deal creates business benefits for Pandora, while improving rates and modernizing compensation for Sony/ATV songwriters in the US, the companies said in a joint statement.
Sony/ATV has been telegraphing its desire to bypass performing rights organizations and deal directly with Pandora for months. Under the just announced direct agreement, the music publisher says it can deliver improved performance royalties for its songwriters. For its part, Pandora will benefit from greater rate certainty at a time when regulators are reviewing rates, as well as, have "the ability to add new flexibility to the company’s product offering over time."
The public performance royalties Pandora also pays to rights holders of master recordings are not affected by this agreement.
“We believe that this agreement with Pandora is a major step in the right direction to ensure that our songwriters are fairly compensated for the use of their music on streaming services,” said Martin Bandier, Sony/ATV Chairman and CEO. “We are pleased that our songwriters will begin to enjoy the benefit of better rates on one of the most important platforms for music consumption and discovery. It is part of our ongoing strategy to ensure that all digital music services recognize the indispensable value that the words and music of a song bring to their businesses.”
“This is a significant milestone in our long-standing effort to strengthen ties with the music maker community,” said Brian McAndrews, chief executive officer of Pandora. “Over 10 years, Pandora has built music’s most powerful marketing engine, which we put into action every day for Sony/ATV’s storied catalog. By partnering directly with Sony/ATV, we are proud to lock in our opportunity to connect an incredibly talented community of songwriters with streaming music’s largest and most passionate audience.”