The Elvis Presley brand has been purchased by the Authentic Brands Group, the company that handles the image of Marilyn Monroe and Muhammad Ali.
Whilst no price has been revealed, Elvis remains one of the world’s richest entertainers.
The sale gives Authentic Brands management over Elvis Presley Enterprises, which manages aspects of Presley’s image, likeness and name, as well as over the massive collection of music, movies, and television appearances.
As part of the deal, Joel Weinshanker, of the National Entertainment Collectibles Association, has acquired the operating rights of Elvis’ former home Graceland.
However, Elvis’s daughter Lisa Marie will continue to own the property.
‘The licensing and merchandising [rights] of this business is not to be confused with the fact that the property will always remain with me and my family,’ stated Lisa Marie.
Expanding the empire
In 2011, the Robert FX Sillerman-led Core Media Group bought the majority rights to both Elvis Presley Enterprises and Graceland.
He has now sold the business to the Authentic Brands Group.
The group says it plans to increase Elvis’ popularity around the globe.
Currently, the merchandising and licensing of Elvis Presley Enterprises is said to be worth around USD 30 million a year.
Lisa Marie Presley has stated: “While I will continue to own Graceland and the original artefacts, we are looking forward to working with our new partners to continue the growth and expansion we have been working toward.”
One example of Elvis marketing is the compilation album “The Nation’s Favourite Elvis Songs” – currently number five in the UK album charts.
Upon his death on the 16th of August 1977, Elvis was reported to have approximately USD 5 million in savings.
Yet earnings from his estate have reached record numbers, due to the careful marketing of his image and from his former home Graceland; the second most visited private house in America after the White House.
Posthumous wealth in numbers
- Michael Jackson, singer, USD 160
- Elvis Presley, singer, USD 55 million
- Charles Schultz, cartoonist, USD 37 million
- Elizabeth Taylor, actress, USD 25 million
- Bob Marley, singer, USD 18 million
- Marilyn Monroe, actress and model, USD 15 million
- John Lennon, singer, USD 12 million
- Albert Einstein, scientist, USD 10 million
- Bettie Page, model, USD 10 million
Theodor Geisel (Dr. Seuss), author, USD 9 m