Simon Cowell’s empire expands with a Sony deal worth $1billion

by Gerard McGarry

Simon Cowell’s bank balance looked about ten times healthier last night as he signed a deal with Sony which is set to earn him $1billion over six years.

Let’s say that again. $1billion over six years. What the hell do you do with that kind of money? Buy a small country?

The Sun reports that:

The talent show tycoon has wrested his company Syco from the music giant and set it up as a joint venture, which will see him getting 50 per cent of profits.

Previously the operation was wholly owned by Sony with Cowell, 50, getting millions through salary and profit share as a paid employee.

The new company, still to be called Syco, will house its current artists including Leona Lewis and Joe McElderry – but also TV shows X Factor and … Got Talent, both in the UK and worldwide.

In the space of a few years, Cowell has gone from being a judge on Pop Idol to owning several huge entertainment brands of his own. X Factor, which launched in the UK in 2004, is now syndicated all over the globe. The Got Talent shows – America’s Got Talent and Britain’s Got Talent – are also now global franchises.

I’m half-admiring, half-terrified of how quickly Simon Cowell has established himself as a major force in entertainment. What he mustn’t forget is the blunt honesty and eye for talent that got him where he is today. I’d hate to think that there are a dozen of more countries out there looking for the next novelty ‘Jedward’ act while the Colombian equivalent of Louis Walsh is blasting the Colombian equivalent of Simon for signing the Colombian equivalent of Robson and Jerome…

Most frightening of all – you may soon be able to visit X Factor World, a theme park dedicated to all that’s…er…reasonably good about X Factor acts. Any speculation on what sorts of rides an X Factor-style theme park might have? A Louis Walsh/Piers Morgan-inspired horror ride? A rollercoaster that plays ‘vistory music’ on the ascents and Home on the descents? Could they resist having a map of the park called Your X Factor Journey?

Over to you…

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Gerard McGarry is a jet-setting, world-renowned Reality TV critic. In real life, Gerard works with web and social media strategy. His personal blog is at or follow him on Twitter @gerrybot