Seal told to pay £1m commission to former manager

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The Independent Online

The singer and songwriter Seal faces a commission payout of about £1m to his former manager after a High Court judgment against him yesterday.

The singer, whose real name is Henry Olusegun Adeola Samuel, contested the action brought by his former manager John Wadlow over unpaid commission on the earnings from his first two albums. Seal, 43, who is expecting a second child with his wife Heidi Klum, the supermodel, was not present in court in London for the decision from Mr Justice Gray. The ruling did not determine how much Mr Wadlow should be paid. The exact figure will now have to be assessed, but it could be around £1m.

The singer was ordered to make an interim payment of £500,000 by 21 July and an interim payment of £175,000 towards Mr Wadlow's costs.

The judge said Mr Wadlow's entitlement to commission arose under a March 1995 "management and publishing settlement agreement", the purpose of which, he said, was to implement Seal's wish to bring to an end his relationship with Mr Wadlow.

"Mr Wadlow was agreeing to the termination of what might... have been substantial future earnings as Seal's manager." The judge ruled that the 1995 settlement agreement replaced a 1990 management agreement "and the effect of it is that Mr Wadlow has a continuing entitlement to commission in respect of the first and second albums".

Seal met Mr Wadlow in 1987 when he was 24 years old and had yet to be discovered.He released his first album in May 1991 and his second in May 1994; both reached No 1 in the UK chart.