16 September 2022
We have acted for the Chairman and Founder of Kobalt Music Group Limited, Willard Ahdritz, on the sale of the group to private equity fund Francisco Partners. Willard Ahdritz will continue as Chairman of Kobalt and as part of this complex, multi-jurisdictional transaction, we advised him in collaboration with his US advisers.
Kobalt is one of the world’s largest, most innovative music companies, using technology to power creative freedom, transparency, ownership and control for artists, songwriters, publishers, and labels. Today, Kobalt has over 700 employees in 12 offices around the world, represents over 20,000 artists and songwriters, 600,000 songs and 600 publishing companies, and continues to push its disruptive philosophy and values into other areas of the music industry.
Commenting on the deal, Head of private equity Emma Danks said: "At Taylor Wessing we are proud to work with real trailblazers and Kobalt is certainly one of them, having successfully disrupted the music industry with its innovative technology, providing a viable alternative to the traditional model and making creators the priority. We are thrilled to have advised Willard on this sale as the business enters an exciting new chapter with Francisco Partners and continues its transformation of the industry."
Willard Ahdritz, Founder and Chairman of Kobalt Music Group, added: "For over 20 years, Kobalt has been a music leader with technology as a core part of our focus, and I can’t think of a better investor than Francisco Partners to back our vision and invest deeply in our ambitious technology development and creator services. I am grateful to the Taylor Wessing team for providing exceptional support and expertise throughout, demonstrating why they are a go-to firm for those in the tech sector."
The team was led by partner Emma Danks with support from partner Jonny Bethell and associate Angela Petrevska in the private equity team.