SOURCE: Warner Music Group

May 31, 2006 17:18 ET

Warner Music Group Corp. Completes Acquisition of Ryko Corporation

NEW YORK, NY -- (MARKET WIRE) -- May 31, 2006 -- Warner Music Group Corp. (NYSE: WMG) today announced it has completed its acquisition of Ryko Corporation, a leading independent, integrated music and entertainment company. The agreement to acquire Ryko from an investment group led by JPMorgan Partners for $67.5 million was originally announced on March 24, 2006.

Under the completed agreement, WMG has acquired Ryko's catalog, award-winning independent distribution division, and its label and artist roster.

The Ryko catalog includes more than 1,000 titles of rock, folk, jazz, world, blues and alternative albums including Restless Records' catalog of punk, new wave and soundtrack recordings, the Hannibal catalog of British and American folk rock and world music and the Emperor Norton electronic and dance catalog. Artists represented in the catalog include: Ali Farka Toure with Ry Cooder, Bill Hicks, Brian Eno, Frank Zappa, Joe Jackson, Kelly Willis, Soul Asylum, The Dead Milkmen, The Flaming Lips, The Misfits, The Replacements and They Might Be Giants.

Ryko Distribution, the company's independent distribution division, sells music and DVD releases from Rykodisc and third-party record and video labels, such as SPV, Oh Boy, Rough Trade/Sanctuary, Blix Street, Alligator, Bloodshot, Compass Records and Blue Underground. Ryko Distribution, Alternative Distribution Alliance (ADA) and WEA, functioning side-by-side, will form a combined distribution network that further establishes WMG as the U.S. leader in the distribution of independent music.

Ryko's recorded music label, Rykodisc, focuses on contemporary music and comedy releases from artists including Kelly Willis, The Posies, Big Star, Brian Eno, Joe Jackson, The Misfits, Rory Block, Jimmy Thackery, comedian Billy Connolly, Elf Power, and film and television soundtracks. Rykodisc will remain a standalone label and draw upon the resources of WMG labels, Warner Bros. and Atlantic, as well as Warner Music International to promote its roster.

Ryko Corporation, Ryko Distribution and the Rykodisc label will remain headquartered in New York City. As previously announced, WMG does not expect the acquisition to be material to earnings in 2006.

About Warner Music Group

Warner Music Group became the only stand-alone music company to be publicly traded in the United States in May 2005. With its broad roster of new stars and legendary artists, Warner Music Group is home to a collection of the best-known record labels in the music industry including Asylum, Atlantic, Bad Boy, Cordless, East West, Elektra, Lava, Maverick, Nonesuch, Reprise, Rhino, Sire, Warner Bros. and Word. Warner Music International, a leading company in national and international repertoire, operates through numerous international affiliates and licensees in more than 50 countries. Warner Music Group also includes Warner/Chappell Music, one of the world's leading music publishers.

Contact Information

  • Media Contact:
    Will Tanous
    Warner Music Group
    (212) 275-2244
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    Investor Contact:
    Jill Krutick
    Warner Music Group
    (212) 275-4790
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