HgCapital agrees to sell Boosey & Hawkes for £126 million to Imagem Music

  • Sale completes successful four-year investment and turnaround programme
  • B&H reinforced as world class music publishing group

London, 11th April 2008: HgCapital, the European sector-focused private equity investor, today announced that it has agreed to sell Boosey & Hawkes, the leading classical music publishing and rights group, to Imagem Music, the music publishing fund of All Pensions Group (APG) and CP Masters BV, one of Europe's leading independent music publishers, for a consideration of approximately £126 million.

The sale completes a successful four-year investment for HgCapital and represents a significant return following its original acquisition of Boosey & Hawkes, then a public company, for £75 million in December 2003.

During that time the firm supported Boosey & Hawkes' management in executing a transformation of the business from a traditional classical music publisher into a 21st century music rights group. The company has outsourced a number of non-core activities such as printing and distribution and developed a series of new revenue streams. In particular it has developed a strong presence in the market for music in advertising and film, where revenues are currently growing at approximately 30% per annum.

In 2003, Boosey & Hawkes made earnings (before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation) of approximately £3.3 million; by 2007 the company achieved earnings of £6.8 million.

Boosey & Hawkes controls the rights to more than 116,000 works of music and choreography, from many of the world's most famous classical composers, including Stravinsky, Rachmaninoff, Benjamin Britten and Prokofieff. It also works with many of the world's most renowned living composers such as Peter Maxwell Davies, Karl Jenkins, John Adams and Steve Reich.

During HgCapital ownership it has made six acquisitions that have moved it into new areas such as tango and jazz, including signings with composer/performers such as Wynton Marsalis. The existing management team led by John Minch, the Chief Executive, will be retained.

APG (on behalf of pension fund ABP) has acquired the classical catalogue managed by Boosey & Hawkes in partnership with CPM through their music publishing fund: Imagem Music. The acquisition is a long term strategic investment for Imagem Music, which also recently acquired various music catalogues from Universal Music Group, such as Zomba UK, Rondor UK, 19 Music and the greatest part of the BBC catalogue.

Commenting on the transaction, Nick Turner from HgCapital said:
"We are very pleased to have reached this agreement with Imagem Music. Boosey & Hawkes is a first class music business that has thrived under HgCapital's ownership and this transaction fully reflects the hard work and success that the company and its management have enjoyed in recent years. We wish them well for the future."

Ronald Wuijster, head of Strategy and Research of APG Investments, said:
"We view this transaction as a great add-on to our recent acquisition of certain catalogues with popular music content from Universal (UMG). This acquisition of the largest classical music rights catalogue in the world greatly diversifies our portfolio and strengthens our position.

"We are committed to be a long term investor in this space and find intellectual property rights, among which music rights is an important category, a lucrative new asset class with interesting characteristics for a long term investor that is looking for real absolute returns."

André de Raaff, CEO of CP Masters BV, said:
"We are extremely excited to be connected now with the world's best classical music from many legendary composers as well as many successful living composers. Classical entertainment is enjoying a tremendous growth, also because of the ageing of the world population. Boosey & Hawkes and our other music publishing assets will be run separately, however synergies with regard to syncs, finance, royalties & copyrights and the Boosey & Hawkes offices in Berlin and New York will be created immediately. "

John Minch added:
"This is an excellent outcome for everyone concerned. HgCapital has been a tremendous owner for Boosey & Hawkes over the past four years and enabled the business to undergo transformational change. In 2003 Boosey & Hawkes was in some difficulties as a public company and going private enabled us to make the radical changes necessary for the survival of the business.

"Imagem Music meanwhile promises to be a highly supportive long-term owner for the company that can reap steady and predictable financial benefits from our world class music portfolio. We look forward to working with them."

HgCapital was advised in this transaction by Close Brothers Corporate Finance and Weil Gotshal & Manges. APG was advised by ABN AMRO Bank N.V., Herbert Smith and Statham Gill Davies Solicitors.


Nick Turner Tel: +44 (0) 207 089 7890
Boosey & Hawkes
John Minch Tel: +44 (0) 20 7054 7200
Maitland (PR Advisers to HgCapital and Boosey & Hawkes)
Neil Bennett Tel: +44 (0) 207 379 5151
CP Masters BV
André de Raaff Tel: +31 (0) 35 647 4040
Thijs Steger Tel: +31 (0) 45 579 8100

About HgCapital
HgCapital is a sector focused private equity investor in the European mid-market. We focus on investments with an enterprise value in the range of £50-£500 million. Our business model combines sector specialisation with dedicated, pro-active support to our portfolio companies as well as the corresponding management expertise across all phases of the investment process. HgCapital manages more than €2 billion for some of the world's leading institutional and private investors. Our goal is to achieve outstanding results for our investors, management team and intermediaries. For further details, see www.hgcapital.com

About APG
APG is an independent pension services company based in the Netherlands. APG Investments is a division of APG, All Pensions Group. APG Investments manages more than €200 billion and it is one of the largest managers of pension assets in the world. APG promotes the pension interests of 2.7 million Dutch citizens and more than 4000 Dutch employers. APG employs 2500 people, 450 of which are active in asset management. APG has offices in the Netherlands in Amsterdam and Heerlen.

About CP Masters
CP Masters is one of Europe's leading independent music companies and is owned by André de Raaff and Denis Wigman (CP Masters' CFO). André de Raaff has over thirty years' experience working in and running music publishing companies. He is a board member of the Dutch performing rights society BUMA and chairman of the Dutch Music Publishing Association (NMUV). CTM is an entertainment company active in several sectors such as; film, TV, records and music publishing. CP Masters is the music publishing business of CTM.

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