Warner Music Group sold to Russian billionaire


Shareholders of Warner Music Group voted overwhelmingly on Wednesday (7/6) to approve the sale of the record label to Russian billionaire Len Blavatnik for $8.25 per share. The deal announced in May placed a total value of $3.3 billion on WMG.

Closing is expected to take place in the current quarter.

WMG said holders of 145,819,757 shares of the company’s outstanding common stock voted in favor of the buyout by Blavatnik’s US-based Access Industries. Only 165,810 shares voted against the deal.

The outcome was never really in doubt, since Thomas H. Lee Partners, Bain Capital and WMG CEO Edgar Bronfman Jr. had entered into a voting agreement to support the sale to Blavatnik. Collectively they held about 56% of WMG’s votes, but the deal also won overwhelming approval from other shareholders in Wednesday’s vote.

Shareholders also approved “golden parachutes” for WMG’s top executives. That non-binding advisory vote was 137,738,124 shares in favor and 7,755,049 shares against.