After spending five years on the market, Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch property — which was renamed to Sycamore Valley Ranch after the late singer faced sexual abuse allegations and lawsuits — has sold for $22 million. According to The Wall Street Journal, billionaire and co-founder of the investment firm Yucaipa Companies Ron Burkle, who was also a former associate to the King Of Pop, purchased the property for what was a relatively cheap price, at least compared to the $100 million for which it was initially listed back in 2015. In the years following, the ranch was repeatedly forced to lower its asking price, with last year’s listing a mere $31 million.
Jackson originally purchased the Neverland Ranch for $19.5 million back in 1987. Soon the property, which is located 40 miles from Santa Barbara and spans about 2,700 acres, boasted a number of attractions for children, including a railroad, an amusement park, and a zoo. The ranch was shut down in 2006 and two years later, the pop singer defaulted on a loan that was backed by the ranch’s co-owners, the real estate investment trust Colony Capital. The property’s title later became a joint venture between Jackson and Colony Capital, after the latter bought the note for the loan.
Speaking to The Wall Street Journal about the purchase, a representative for Burkle said the purchase was “a land bank opportunity” for him to add to his California property portfolio. The Neverland Ranch acquisition also comes after the pop singer’s estate won a court appeal over HBO’s Leaving Neverland documentary, which claimed the film broke a nearly three-decade-old non-disparagement clause.
(via The Wall Street Journal)