Add a bookmark to get started

blue sky and white clouds reflected in glass building
4 April 20243 minute read

DLA Piper advises Dundee Partners in entering strategic partnership with Universal Music Group valuing Chord Music Partners at US$1.85 billion

DLA Piper is advising Dundee Partners, the investment office of the Hendel family and co-founder of Chord Music Partners (Chord) in entering into a strategic partnership with Universal Music Group (UMG) to acquire KKR’s majority interest in Chord. The transaction values Chord at US$1.85 billion.

Chord was formed in 2021 by Dundee Partners and KKR. Chord’s portfolio includes works from many of the world’s most iconic artists and songwriters, including The Weeknd, Ryan Tedder/OneRepublic, David Guetta, Lorde, Kid Cudi, Diplo, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Ellie Goulding, ZZ Top, John Legend, Twenty One Pilots and many more.

Dundee and UMG entered into a new long-term strategic partnership to actively manage Chord’s rights through UMG’s global network and to acquire additional catalogs via Chord in the future. KKR will exit Chord upon completion of the transaction.

“We were pleased to work with DLA Piper on forming a long-term partnership between Chord and UMG. This was a complicated transaction, and Adam, Jonathan and the DLA team brought their experience to bear in structuring, governance, financing, IP, and much more. We thank them for their outstanding work,” said Sam Hendel, Dundee Partners’ Managing Principal and Co-Founder of Chord.

“It was a pleasure to provide counsel to Dundee on this critical partnership with UMG, and we were delighted to provide our industry-leading capabilities to bring this deal together,” said Adam Brenner, the DLA Piper partner who led the deal team.

In addition to Brenner and Jonathan Klein (both in New York), the DLA Piper team included partners throughout the world, including a team in Ireland led by Conor Houlihan (Dublin) and a team in Canada led by Robert Fonn (Toronto) along with Jamie Knox, Grant Buerstetta and Drew Young (all in New York), Yoni Tuchman (Los Angeles) and Alex Roberts (Toronto); of counsels Meghan Carey (Washington, DC) and James Manzione (New York); and associates Scott Luftig, Peter Phillips, Sami Jameel (all in New York), Sam Marll and David Kurlander (both in Philadelphia), Jason Parfet (Austin), Rommy Hage (Chicago) and Brandon DeLano (Houston).

With more than 1,000 corporate lawyers globally, DLA Piper helps clients execute complex transactions seamlessly while supporting clients across all stages of development. The firm has been rated number one in global M&A volume for 15 consecutive years, according to Mergermarket, and ranked as a top five most active VC legal advisor in the US and number one in VC, PE and M&A in combined global deal volume according to PitchBook.

DLA Piper's market-leading international team of media, sport and entertainment lawyers, located throughout the Americas, Asia Pacific, Europe, Africa and the Middle East, advises on M&A, finance, borrowing, investment and corporate issues, production and rights acquisitions, exploiting media rights, staging and exploiting live sports and other events, intellectual property protection and enforcement, regulatory and administrative issues, antitrust and competition law, stadium and arena development and on the resolution of disputes.