Michael Jackson's estate has agreed to sell it's 50 percent share of Sony/ATV Music Publishing for $750 million to Sony, giving the company sole ownership of works by Taylor Swift, Eminem, The Beatles, 50 Cent, Rihanna, Willie Nelson, Snoop Dogg, Stevie Nicks, Santana, the Rolling Stones, LL Cool J, Mary J. Blige, R. Kelly, Lady Gaga, Jay Z, Coldplay and many others.
The joint venture between Jackson and Sony began 21 years ago.
Jackson's estate will retain the rights to his masters, as well as the 10 percent interest it holds in EMI Music Publishing, as well as Mijac Music, the publishing company that owns the songs written by Jackson as well as songs written by other writers, according to Billboard.
Jackson estate co-executors John Branca & John McClain said in a statement:
"This transaction further allows us to continue our efforts of maximizing the value of Michael's Estate for the benefit of his children. It also further validates Michael's foresight and genius in investing in music publishing. His ATV catalogue, purchased in 1985 for a net acquisition cost of $41.5 million, was the cornerstone of the joint venture and, as evidenced by the value of this transaction, is considered one of the smartest investments in music history."
When Jackson passed away in 2009, he was $500 million in debt. Posthumous sales of his music and merchandise have since shot through the roof. Coupled with proceeds from this deal with Sony, the estate is now in the black.
Michael's three children, Paris, Blanket and Prince Jackson, have trusts that assure they will be well taken care of financially.