Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Disney Family’s Shamrock Capital Made a Bigger Than Usual Investment in Taylor Swift’s Music as They Build Business


Back in July, there wasn’t too much interest in the announcement that Shamrock Capital, aka Shamrock Holdings, had closed a round of financing to the tune of $400 million in capital.

The investment fund of the Disney family is said to have $1.9 billion of assets under management and invests from $15 million to $100 million of control or minority equity in growth capital and buyouts. This fund is focused on media, entertainment, communications, and intellectual property.

With that new $400 million they were going to go shopping. Who knew it was Taylor Swift they’d be putting in their cart?

But it makes sense. In 2018, Shamrock bought Tor Hermansen and Mikkel Erikson’s Stargate music publishing catalog with songs like Katy Perry’s “Firework,” Rihanna’s “Diamonds” and Beyonce’s “Irreplacable.” That first fund raised $250 million and holds an interest in more than 800 films, 1,000 television episodes, and 5,000 music compositions.

Reports say Shamrock usually spends between $5 million to $50 million on entertainment-related intellectual property rights of films, television programming, music, and video games. So if they did spend $300 million on Taylor Swift’s masters, they outdid themselves.

Is it a good investment? Swift says she’s begun re-recording her catalog. Shamrock, don’t forget, didn’t buy Swift’s publishing. They bought the records. You know she’s going to finish the re-records and make a thing of it, with her core fans buying up the new versions and staging bonfires of the old. Shamrock better hope they’ve got a magical four leaf clover when that happens.

And what about the Disney family? These are Roy Disney’s children. I’ve met them, they’re nice people and consider themselves progressives. Maybe they didn’t know what was going on– they don’t run Shamrock. Ruining Taylor Swift’s life– a second time this year– doesn’t seem like something they’d want to do.


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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