So, Taylor Swift’s Dad Made $15 Million When Her Catalog Was Sold to Scooter Braun

kansas city, missouri july 08 editorial use only no book covers taylor swift performs onstage during night two of taylor swift the eras tour at geha field at arrowhead stadium on july 08, 2023 in kansas city, missouri photo by fernando leontas23getty images for tas rights management
Taylor’s Dad Made $15M From *That* Scooter DealFernando Leon/TAS23

Just to add another ~layer~ to the already-complex-as-hell Taylor Swift masters drama, a new report revealed that her dad, Scott Swift, made ABSOLUTE BANK when her music catalog sold to Scooter Braun.

According to Music Business Worldwide, Scott Swift made $15 million (henceforth known as the exact dollar figure definition of all-caps “ABSOLUTE BANK”) in the $300 million deal. Before you fall down a conspiracy theory rabbit hole or anxiety spiral with worry about Taylor feeling betrayed and ending up in a royal family feud sitch, take every available seat and breathe because her dad seems to have handled things exactly right (which is to say by prioritizing his relationship with his daughter over business nonsense).

A source in the know about the negotiations involved in Scooter’s hostile takeover of Taylor’s life’s work assured Entertainment Tonight that Tay’s dad was totally unaware of the deal until it was announced publicly (not that he could have done anything about it anyway because, as the ET source pointed out, Big Machine CEO Scott Borchetta controlled 90 percent of the stock so the ball was firmly in his court).

Papa Swift was apparently invited to participate in a super-secret shareholder call about the deal before it was public knowledge, but he took a hard pass when he heard that he would be required to sign an NDA that would legally force him to withhold information from Taylor.

This was all confirmed by a source described as “Taylor’s rep” (hi, Tree!), who told ET:

“There was a shareholder phone call that Scott Swift did not participate in due to a very strict NDA that bound all shareholders and prohibited any discussion at all without risk of severe penalty. Her dad did not join that call because he did not want to be required to withhold any information from his own daughter.”

While it might seem very “duh” that Taylor’s dad would have opted out of meetings/calls/discussions that would require him to prioritize his role as a Big Machine shareholder over his role as Father of Someone Guaranteed to Be Affected by Literally Any NDA-Worthy News the label could have possibly had to share at the time, Borchetta actually made a point of publicly claiming more or less the opposite back when the sale was announced in 2019.

In response to Taylor’s scorched-earth Tumblr post about the sale, Borchetta penned a post of his own called “So, It’s Time for Some Truth…” (complete with passive-aggressive ellipsis), in which he wrote:

“Taylor’s dad, Scott Swift, was a shareholder in Big Machine Records LLC. We first alerted all of the shareholders on Thursday, June 20 for an official shareholder’s call scheduled for Tuesday, June 25. On the 6/25 call, the shareholders were made aware of the pending deal with Ithaca Holdings and had 3 days to go over all of the details of the proposed transaction. We then had a final call on Friday, June 28 in which the transaction passed with a majority vote and 3 of the 5 shareholders voting ‘yes’ with 92% of the shareholder’s vote.”

Later in his response post, Borchetta did seem to acknowledge that Taylor’s dad wasn’t personally on the call by noting that he was represented by a lawyer on it, but he also implied that Scott Swift was filled in on all details and then made it seem like it was expected that those details would have been shared with Taylor preannouncement.

“I guess it might somehow be possible that her dad Scott, 13 Management lawyer Jay Schaudies (who represented Scott Swift on the shareholder calls), or 13 Management executive and Big Machine LLC shareholder Frank Bell (who was on the shareholder calls) didn’t say anything to Taylor over the prior 5 days. I guess it’s possible that she might not have seen my text. But I truly doubt that she ‘woke up to the news when everyone else did.’”

While Borchetta’s 2019 post didn’t mention anything about an NDA, assuming one did exist and Tree unnamed Taylor reps and sources aren’t just pathologically lying about it four years later, this adds a whole new layer of shade (we can call it the “not-so-lowkey implying you/your dad has done something I could sue you for” layer) to the mix.

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