Purchase Price: $79 Million

By Bob Grossweiner and Jane Cohen

Live Nation has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire merchandise company Signatures Network for a total of approximately $79 million in cash, stock and repayment of debt. Capital adjustments still need to be worked out. The transaction is expected to close later this year. Signatures Network’s Chief Executive Officer, Dell Furano, will head up Live Nation Artists’ Merchandise Division. Live Nation also owns artist merchandiser Anthill Trading and high end artist merchandise company, TRUNK Ltd

The Live Nation Artists division was formed earlier this year to partner with artists to manage their diverse rights, grow their fan bases and provide a direct connection to fans. Madonna marked the division’s inaugural client when she inked a $120 million deal this fall.

Signatures Network holds the rights to market and license more than 150 artists, including The Beatles, U2, Bruce Springsteen, Barbra Streisand, Justin Timberlake, Ozzy Osbourne, Billy Joel, The Grateful Dead, KISS, Jennifer Lopez, The Doors and many others. In addition, it has expanded its core business by offering print-on-demand merchandising and custom manufacturing, allowing music fans to create unique one-of-a-kind products.

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“The Signatures deal anchors our important Merchandise Division with a company that holds the merchandise licenses for more than 150 artists, including many of the most successful performers in the world,” said Michael Cohl, chairman and chief executive of Live Nation Artists, in a statement. “This acquisition is a key component to our strategy to build a unified business around touring artists, managing their rights holistically and helping them reach their true potential.”