BMG Takes Sanctuary

Having lost out to Warner Music Group in a bid to buy Parlophone, Bertelsmann Music Group has forked over £40 million ($62 million) for Sanctuary Records’ catalogue.

Universal, which bought Sanctuary (and what was then Helter Skelter agency) in 2007, needed to make the disposal to satisfy the conditions laid down by the European Commission when it allowed the Vivendi-owned company’s $1.9 billion purchase of EMI’s recorded music business.

Sanctuary is home to Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath and Motörhead.

BMG, a partnership between Bertelsmann and U.S.-based equity firm KKR, was reportedly split over how much it should spend on acquisitions.

Bertelsmann, which is looking to pocket euro 2 billion by hiving off 15 percent of its 90 percent hold in broadcasting subsidiary RTL, appears to be the more bullish of the partners.

Three months ago the New York Post reckoned the main bone of contention was how far the partnership should go to buy Parlophone and claimed the disagreements over future policy could lead to Bertelsmann buying out KKR.