UPDATE 1-Pension fund ABP buys music assets in $250 mln deal

AMSTERDAM, April 11 Fri Apr 11, 2008 9:02am EDT

AMSTERDAM, April 11 (Reuters) - Dutch pension fund ABP has made new music investments in a deal worth 126 million pounds ($249 million) as it bought a music company to diversify its 220 billion euro portfolio, ABP's asset manager APG said on Friday.

APG said in a statement it agreed to buy Boosey & Hawkes, a music publisher and manufacturer of musical instruments, from private equity firm HgCapital Trust (HGT.L).

APG made the acquisition through ABP's joint venture Imagem Music, an investment fund jointly owned with Dutch music publisher CP Masters, giving Imagem publishing rights for artists such as Stravinsky, Rachmaninoff, and Steve Reich.

ABP, the world's third-biggest state pension fund after Japan's and Norway's, in February bought publishing rights for artists like Justin Timberlake, Kaiser Chiefs, and Beyonce through Imamgem in deal with Universal Music Group worth 140 million euros ($221.5 million).

Music publishing, which can draw revenues from sources such as television, advertising and video games, has become increasingly coveted by investors who are attracted to its steady cash flow and stability.

"Intellectual property rights, which include music publishing rights, are a profitable investment category for us with attractive qualities for a long term investor focused on absolute, real returns," Ronald Wuijster, head of strategy and research at APG, said in the statement.

ABP, which manages pensions for about 2.6 million Dutch civil servants and retirees, expects to make new investments in music, an APG spokesman said, but he declined to give details.

CP Masters, which has a small minority stake in Imagem, manages the music rights Imagem owns. (Reporting by Gilbert Kreijger; editing by Rory Channing)

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