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Michael Jackson Estate Sells Sony/ATV Music Publishing Business to Sony

PASADENA, CA - JANUARY 31: Michael Jackson performs during the Halftime show as the Dallas Cowboys take on the Buffalo Bills in Super Bowl XXVII at Rose Bowl on January 31, 1993 in Pasadena, California. The Cowboys won 52-17. (Photo by George Rose/Getty Images)

The estate of Michael Jackson has sold its 50 percent stake in Sony/ATV Music Publishing to the Sony Corporation for $750 million, giving Sony sole ownership, Billboard reports. Sony/ATV, which also controls EMI Music Publishing, is the world’s largest music publisher.

Jackson paid $47.5 million for the ATV catalogue in 1985, acquiring valuable copyrights that famously included most of the Beatles’ songs. The investment turned out to be a lucrative one for Jackson; Sony/ATV is valued at over $2 billion. The lower buyout price is the result of debt and other accounting in the two entities’ complicated co-ownership.

The buyout was first announced in March. With the $750 million, the Jackson estate is expected to be able to clear its debt and place money in a trust for Jackson’s beneficiaries, his three children. The estate still holds interests in a number of other music assets, including EMI Music Publishing, Jackson’s personal publishing company Mijac Music, and Jackson’s own master recording tapes.