Tribune Company to acquire Gracenote from Sony

December 24, 2013 10.19 Europe/London By Robert Briel

Tribune Company has entered into an agreement with Sony Corporation of America to purchase Gracenote for $170 million.

Gracenote is a source of music data, featuring metadata for more than 180 million tracks, which helps power more than a billion smart phones and tablets, as well as streaming music services.

Tribune Company will combine Gracenote with Tribune Media Services (TMS), a provider of television and movie metadata.

“This transaction extends and complements TMS’ best-in-class core competency in the metadata business, while also deepening Tribune’s slate of subscription services,” said Peter Liguori, Tribune Company president and CEO.

“Gracenote and TMS are an ideal fit,” said Shashi Seth, president of Tribune Digital Ventures, which includes oversight of TMS.

“Both companies have substantial digital footprints and are well-respected leaders in their areas globally. Together we will become an even greater force in the global entertainment data business by servicing new and existing customers with better data, new products, and new services to help an evolving entertainment industry.”

“Given the breadth of the Tribune Company and its commitment to revolutionizing digital media, I firmly believe that we have found the right home to grow our business and realize Gracenote’s long-term vision,” said Stephen White, president of Gracenote.

“The marriage of these world-class music and video data platforms, from TMS and Gracenote, will help us reimagine how people discover and connect with music, movies and TV shows across all devices.”

Tribune is purchasing all of the shares of Gracenote, Inc., which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, for $170 million subject to standard adjustments. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2014, upon receipt of regulatory approvals. Sony said it expects to realise a one-time operating gain of $60 million on the sale.