Rightsline, the leading rights and finance management platform for the media and entertainment industry, announced that it has acquired REAL Software Systems. This move will extend its core IP rights management services to fully support end-to-end financial and royalties workflows, while simultaneously expanding its market from media and entertainment into gaming, publishing, consumer products, life sciences and high tech, among other global industries.
“Before this acquisition, Rightsline was already the established leader for managing Hollywood’s global IP rights,” said Patrick Arkeveld, CEO of Rightsline, whose customers include nearly every major studio and streaming platform. “With this acquisition, we’ve assembled a product suite designed to manage the entire lifecycle of IP monetization for nearly any company, in any industry, anywhere in the world.”
Since its founding in 1993, REAL Software Systems has grown to become a leading provider of IP Commerce software globally, with its Alliant platform managing more than $12 billion in royalties annually across multiple industries. Today, its flagship platform—Alliant—automates the contractual rights, royalties accounting, revenue sharing and profit sharing of more than 70 notable companies with a wide range of underlying IP.
“We’re incredibly proud of REAL’s success as software engine builders and pioneers in the IP Commerce space,” said REAL CEO Kent Sahin. “We’re equally proud to be teaming up with Rightsline to fulfill a longstanding goal of providing a comprehensive, unified, and
flexible platform for IP Commerce businesses. We’re confident that our combined team and product offerings will do just that.”
REAL’s clients span pharmaceutical and life science firms including Gilead and Merck; tech leaders including Dell and Infor; game creators such as EA and Ubisoft; publishers such as Getty Images and Thomson Reuters; media and entertainment leaders such as Legendary and MGM; and consumer-focused companies such as Hallmark and American Greetings.
“The wide range of industries using REAL’s Alliant platform reflects two essential takeaways,” explained Rightsline Chief Revenue Officer Kira Baca. “First, it shows that the Alliant platform is highly adaptable to customers’ unique business models. And second, it underscores just how critical monetizing IP rights and managing royalties are across the entire economy. Whether you’re in life sciences, consumer products, gaming, or entertainment, effectively managing the IP lifecycle provides an increasingly essential competitive edge in today’s information economy.”
The integration of Rightsline’s and REAL’s systems will provide expanded capabilities for their existing customers, including BBC Studios, AMC and the Public Broadcasting Service. Seamless data exchange and complementary feature build-outs will provide operational efficiencies to teams already using both Rightsline and Alliant, allowing them to replace time-consuming multi-system workflows with higher value strategic activities.
“Combining Rightsline and Alliant from a product standpoint allows us to bring to market the first truly horizontally-integrated IP Commerce platform supporting robust Contract Lifecycle Management functions, availability and library maximization algorithms, as well as the myriad complexities of IP-based financial calculations on a scale never before achieved,” said Rightsline Chief Technology Officer Matt Bricker. “We have been signaling our commitment to unify the IP supply chain by focusing on increasing our financial capabilities. This transaction demonstrates the reality and scope of that commitment.”
The global IP Commerce market, already sizable, is growing at an unprecedented rate. The recent record-breaking level of mergers, rising integration of global commerce and increased adoption of video, music and podcast streaming—as well as the creation of novel intellectual property assets such as NFTs—have all added value to IP portfolios and at the same time created new legal, operational and financial challenges surrounding their efficient management.
In November 2020, Rightsline was acquired by Klass Capital, a Toronto-based investment firm, in a majority transaction. As part of that transaction, Klass Capital’s investment provided Rightsline with growth capital to scale their platform offering, fuel hiring efforts and accelerate growth into new verticals and product categories, both organically and through M&As. With the acquisition of REAL, Rightsline cements itself as the leader in the $8.7-billion global IP Commerce market. The combined worldwide team of industry and technology experts tops 160 employees and is slated for sustained growth as the company sets its sights on continued expansion.
The terms of Rightsline’s acquisition of REAL were not disclosed. REAL’s employees will join Rightsline, creating the most experienced and effective team in the industry. According to company leadership, with the continued support of Klass Capital, Rightsline is looking to make new strategic acquisitions in an effort to expedite product roadmap initiatives and continue to deliver best-in-class products.