Sir Elton Heads For Sanctuary

Elton John‘s managers have sold their company to Sanctuary Group for £16 million (US$30.1 million) in cash and shares.

As part of the agreement, Frank Presland and Keith Bradley – who started Twenty-First Artists Limited five years ago – have both signed five-year employment contracts with Sanctuary and Sir Elton has inked a new five-year management deal.

“I am very pleased to be involved with Sanctuary as I have been impressed by the approach they take, particularly toward the artist,” the flamboyant artiste said in a press release. “I feel strongly that this will represent the continuation of a very creative period for me and I am looking forward to working with Andy [Taylor], Merck [Mercuriadis] and the whole team.”

Taylor, Sanctuary’s executive chairman, said, “The status of Sir Elton John as a respected and hugely successful artist is unassailable and we are obviously very happy to be involved in his career going forward. I am pleased that Sanctuary’s approach to the music industry is attractive to artists of the credibility of Sir Elton John and this can only enhance Sanctuary’s proposition.”

Sir Elton has sold close to a quarter of a billion records worldwide, with more than 100 U.S. Top 100 chart singles, 12 multi-platinum, 23 platinum and 33 gold U.S. albums and 29 consecutive U.K. Top 40 hits, earning 35 gold and 25 platinum albums.

He’s also been awarded multiple Grammys, including the Grammy Legend Award. He collaborated with lyricist Tim Rice to create the soundtrack to the Walt Disney Pictures blockbuster “The Lion King,” for which his music won an Academy Award.

Twenty-First, which is currently launching James Blunt‘s career, has also worked with Jamiroquai and Mis-Teeq.

It’s the second major move of the week for Sanctuary Artist Management (SAM), following Martin Hall’s appointment as managing director of the company’s U.K. wing.

Hall, who will continue to manage acts including Manic Street Preachers, Groove Armada, Ed Harcourt, The Departure, and Make Good Your Escape, now has responsibility for all of SAM’s U.K. operations, representing more than 20 acts. He’ll be based at the company’s West London headquarters.

SAM also has offices in Los Angeles, New York, Houston and Berlin and a roster of more than 130 acts, from Destiny’s Child and Nelly to Iron Maiden and The Who.