Madonna Settles Fight with Record Label
Madonna is singing a sweeter tune today: She and Warner Music Group have reportedly reached a settlement in their feud, with Warner agreeing to buy out her 12-year-old Maverick label.
In an agreement announced Monday, Warner Music said it would buy out Madonna and Ronnie Dashev, Maverick's chief operating officer, for their share of the label, the Associated Press reports. The pricetag has been placed at $10 million, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Madonna, 45, will have no role in the newly structured company, while Madonna's partner Guy Oseary will keep his share and stay with Maverick as CEO.
Madonna, Oseary and Dashev have collectively owned 60 percent of the company, whose stars have included Alanis Morissette and Michelle Branch. Warner Music owned 40 percent.
In March, Maverick filed suit against Warner Music and its former parent, Time Warner Inc. (which also owns PEOPLE), claiming breach of contract and alleging that they had misstated Maverick's profits and mismanaged the company, costing Madonna and her partners millions of dollars. (An investment group led by Edgar Bronfman Jr. purchased Warner Music Group last year.)
Warner Music countersued, claiming that Maverick was bleeding money.
Madonna will maintain her recording contract with the Warner Bros. record label, which is a part of Warner Music and has been her home since 1984 – selling more than 60 million records on that label.
"It was an effective way of settling the lawsuit," lawyer Bert Fields, who represented Maverick, tells AP. "It's clean and equitable, and it doesn't have anything to do with her record contract."
"This new joint venture agreement is clearly a win-win for both WMG and Maverick," said Lyor Cohen, Warner Music's chairman.
Meanwhile, back on the concert stage, Madonna's recent D.C. stop on her "Re-invention" tour earned positive reviews from The Washington Post. Critic David Segal says that Madonna reigns over a show that's more of a circus than a concert, with elements of Broadway Cirque du Soleil, extreme sports events, church sermons and Rock the Vote rallies – and that it's seamless.
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