David Bowie took steps to ensure his family would inherit his £135m fortune

2016-01-13 22:00

Los Angeles - David Bowie took steps to ensure his wife and children would inherit his £135m fortune.

The Space Oddity singer - who died of cancer on Sunday - came close to bankruptcy in the 1970s but in 1997, his Bowie Bonds scheme gave investors the rights to his royalties for 10 years, before ownership returned to him and allowed him to buy back the rights to some of his most popular work from a former manager.

California-based banker David Pullman, who put together the scheme - which saw Prudential Insurance Company pay £337m for rights to Bowie's first 25 albums - said: "The deal saw that the bonds were paid off and Mr Bowie then retained all his rights.

"He was astute financially and he had the foresight to have things set up then that would look after his family.

"He was smart enough to have confidence in himself. Most artists sell themselves short, and they don't hold out for the rights. He was able to retain his legacy. His songs were his baby."

The Bowie Bonds paid out at an interest rate of 7.9% before they expired in 2007 and the rights reverted back to Bowie, who is survived by second wife Iman, their 15-year-old daughter Alexandria, and his 44-year-old son Duncan Jones, who he had with ex-wife Angie Bowie.

Though the Modern Love hitmaker arranged the deal when he was only 50, Pullman believes he was already thinking ahead to his death.

He added to the Daily Mail newspaper: "At the time of the deal we were talking of just before he was due to celebrate his 50th birthday. He wanted it sorted out after reaching that milestone birthday.

"He was very much into estate planning issues at a relatively young age. I believe he was keen for his estate to benefit from his entire back catalogue.

"His planning was that at the time of his death his assets would all transfer to his family and beneficiaries. Everything that he had was to be left to his family."

Read more on:    david bowie  |  music  |  celebrity deaths

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