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Billionaire investor Bill Ackman told a story about his song-writing grandfather that won over Universal Music's bosses

Published by Business Insider on Mon, 07 Jun 2021


<p><img src="https://static4.businessinsider.com/image/5ece7c3819182479a7702da1-1920/2017-05-19t002435z685608645rc1367565e20rtrmadp3hedgefunds-salt.jpg" border="0" alt="bill ackman" data-mce-source="REUTERS/Richard Brian"></p><p></p><bi-shortcode id="summary-shortcode" data-type="summary-shortcode" class="mceNonEditable" contenteditable="false">Summary List Placement</bi-shortcode><p>Bill Ackman's special-purpose acquisition company (SPAC) is <a href="https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/bill-ackman-pershing-square-spac-psth-universal-music-future-deals-2021-6-1030494453">close to buying 10%</a> of Universal Music Group for $4 billion. The billionaire investor might have his grandfather's musical talents to thank if he manages to seal the deal.</p><p>The Pershing Square chief began his first meeting with UMG executives by regaling them with a story about Herman Ackman, <a href="https://www.wsj.com/articles/ackmans-potential-universal-music-deal-includes-his-grandfathers-hit-song-11622841599">The Wall Street Journal reported</a>, citing people involved in the transaction.</p><p>Ackman's grandfather wrote a song called "Put Your Arms Where They Belong (For They Belong to Me)" in 1926, which he sold to music-publishing group Tin Pan Alley for $150. The ditty sold more than 750,000 copies, Ackman told the bosses of the world's biggest music company, according to The Journal.</p><p>The UMG executives later discovered that their company owned the elder Ackman's recording. They dug up two records of the song and the accompanying sheet music, mounted and framed them, and gifted them to Ackman, The Journal reported.</p><p><em><strong>Read more:&nbsp;</strong><a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/crypto-trading-tips-using-stocks-tesla-apple-sam-bankman-fried-2021-6'utm_source=markets&amp;utm_medium=ingest" target="_blank" rel="noopener" data-e2e-name="inline-read-more-link">A 29-year-old crypto billionaire shares how investors can use Tesla or Apple stock as collateral to buy bitcoin or ether</a></em></p><p>Vivendi, UMG's parent company, met with multiple private-equity firms and other investors interested in buying a piece of the division. Ackman's clear passion for the music businessrooted in his grandfather's legacyalong with his relationship with management and his vision for growing the company, helped him stand out from the crowd, The Journal said.</p><p>Ackman's SPAC, Pershing Square Tontine Holdings, is the vehicle looking to acquire the UMG stake. PSTH, which joined the stock market last summer, would remain a public company and could have nearly $3 billion to pursue another deal, even if the UMG transaction is successful.</p><p>Pershing Square also hopes to launch a new take on SPACs called a SPARC, which won't lock up investors' capital while it searches for a deal, and won't have the pressure to close a deal within two years. Ackman's proposed SPARC would be armed with up to $11 billion to pursue a business combination.</p><p><a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/bill-ackman-pershing-square-grandfather-songwriter-universal-music-spac-deal-2021-6#comments">Join the conversation about this story &#187;</a></p> <p>NOW WATCH: <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/where-run-hide-earthquake-occurs-2017-6">Where you should go to stay safe during an earthquake</a></p>
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