Forbes magazine might have to make some room for Eminem, whose pockets just may have gotten a little heavier after a Supreme Court ruling in his favor this week.
The Detroit Free Press has reported that an appeals court ruling against Universal Music Group – the world’s largest record company – states that UMG must pay Eminem and his former Michigan based production team F.B.T. Productions increased royalties stemming from a 2007 lawsuit.
The suit was drawn up as a result of Universal stating to Eminem’s production squad that 18% was all they were owed on royalties stemming from digital sales. Eminem and F.B.T.’s legal team argued that because online sales are considered licensing agreements by Universal that they were due 50% of all sales. An earlier court decision ruled in favor of this language back in September.
The money that could be due to F.B.T. Productions isn’t exactly chump change either. “For us, this is probably a $40 million to $50 million issue,” said F.B.T.’s Joel Martin. “Every artist who has this sort of language in their contract is now going to go back to their record company and say, ‘OK, so what do you want to do about (download royalties)?’”
The F.B.T Productions team includes brother team Mark and Jeff Bass, both who played instruments on some of Eminem’s earlier recordings and shared production credits with the Detroit star on a variety of tracks over the years.
A ruling of this magnitude isn’t thought by Universal’s side to impact how they do business but some experts feel this could change royalty negotiations forever. Eminem, while not directly involved in enacting the suit, has yet to comment.