Sunday, June 26, 2011

Michael Jackson Still Raking In The Dough

Superstars never really die, they're estates just get richer. That's certainly the case with Michael Jackson, who was on the edge of bankruptcy at the time of his death. Now two years later his estate has collected a huge amount of income, and is poised to make still more in the coming years.

Billboard Magazine reported in June 2010 that the Jackson estate had generated over a $1 billion in the year since his death. The revenue was generated by a combination of music sales ($429 million), film/TV revenue ($392 million), music publishing ($130 million), licensing ($35 million) and a $31 million recording contract. That was a year ago, so the figures are even gaudier today. How did this happen? Consider this:
  • According to Box Office Mojo, Jackson's posthumous concert film, "This Is It," has grossed more than $72 million to date domestically and $189 million in foreign markets for a worldwide take over more than $261 million. It ranks as the #2 music documentary of all-time behind Justin Bieber's "Never Say Never." The film has also generated nearly $45 million in DVD sales in the U.S. 
  • There have been 2 posthumous albums  released since Michael's death in June 2009. Last year's Michael has sold just over 510,000 copies to date, while the This Is It collection has moved nearly 1 million copies to date in the U.S., according to Nielsen SoundScan, remarkable numbers considering the state of the music business and the economy. Then in May, Jackson lodged his first #1 on the Billboard magazine Dance/ Club Play Songs chart in 16 years with the latest single from his posthumous Michael album, "Hollywood Tonight." 
  • Michael has sold more than 16 million digital tracks since June 28, 2009, the first sales week following his passing, according to Nielsen SoundScan. To put that in perspective, from the time Nielsen began counting digital tracks in 2004 until the week before Jackson's death, the singer had sold just over 8.1 million digital tracks, a figure that has doubled in just the past two years. 
  • The Jackson estate is making anywhere from $25 million to $50 million per year thanks to his stake in the half-million-song Sony/ATV publishing catalog, which includes titles by Elvis, Lady Gaga, Eminem, BeyoncĂ© and Bob Dylan
Considering that there will soon be two Cirque du Soleil shows (one permanently set in Las Vegas and the other travelling), it looks like Michael Jackson will continue to be a hot property for some years to come. For more interesting figures on MJ's sales, check out this MTV story.
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1 comment:

Kristian Jackson said...

And with his passing, his estate expenses wouldn't be as much either. (No offense intended.)


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