U2 Signs $50 Million Deal

Irish rockers U2 have signed a massive $50 million deal with Polygram for the release of three Best Of albums. The first, The Best of U2—Volume One: 1980-1990, is currently set for a Nov. 2 release on the Island imprint. Daily Variety reports that this first album will be accompanied by a separate CD made up of B-sides, and that the two projects may also be marketed together in a limited-edition package.

U.K. paper The Financial Times reports that the deal, which was brokered by longtime manager Paul McGuiness, will be most lucrative for Seagram, the massive Canadian corporation that has been in takeover negotiations with Polygram since May. Under the terms of the deal, reports the paper, the $50 million will be paid by the Dutch corporation Phillips, which owns 75 percent of Polygram. But by the time the first album hits record store shelves, Polygram—and its profits—will be owned by Seagram.

For its part, U2 has been releasing music for 20 years, and has sold more than 87 million albums worldwide.

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