Rachael Astin represents clients in transactional and regulatory work relating to the Entertainment, Sports & Media (ESM) sectors, with a particular focus on digital media and content distribution.

Ms. Astin has more than a decade of experience guiding entertainment, sports, and media clients including film studios, production companies, broadcasters, other content owners and distributors, digital platforms, sports organizations, and investors of all sizes on:

  • Complex rights licensing deals, including distribution arrangements, media rights agreements, content commissioning and production, sponsorship and brand management, and other core ESM commercial agreements 
  • New media sector digital ventures and strategic joint ventures
  • Commercial aspects of media sector mergers and acquisitions, investments, and private equity
  • Media and platform regulatory advice relating to digital, broadcast, and advertising
  • General copyright advice relevant to the ESM sector

She leverages extensive knowledge of a broad range of media sub-sectors— including TV, film, sports, publishing, advertising, video games, and music— to help clients keep up with rapidly-evolving market trends, and futureproof their businesses. Ms. Astin has broad and deep knowledge of rights ownership, distribution, and content monetization that allows her to effectively advise clients on complex transactions across the spectrum of ESM.

Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Astin worked in a leading international media and technology practice. She has previously worked in the Middle East, having spent 18 months in Dubai, working with the technology, media, and telecommunications team of the largest law firm in the region.

Ms. Astin maintains an active pro bono practice, leveraging her sector expertise, focused on content commissioning, production, and the structuring and launch of new ventures, such as advising Global Citizen on the licensing of its live music concert during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic.

Ms. Astin is a member of the UK Royal Television Society and Women in Film & Television UK.

Ms. Astin’s recent experience includes representing:

M&A, Private Capital, and Finance

  • SESAC in relation to the reorganization and subsequent securitization of certain SESAC licensed music rights entities, including the Audio Network group
  • DAZN in connection with its bid for the BT Sport TV business
  • KKR on its US$1.1 billion acquisition of Kobalt Capital’s music rights portfolio
  • Northleaf on its strategic alliance with Lyric Capital Group
  • Moonbug Entertainment Limited, a digital-first children’s entertainment company on its acquisition of Cocomelon, the most-viewed YouTube channel in the US, and Supa Strikas
  • Crossroads Live, Inc. on its investment into Tremendous Entertainment, a Malaysian-based producer and presenter of entertainment content in the South East Asia region
  • Sony Pictures Entertainment on its acquisition of Silvergate Media, a developer of children’s brands for broadcasters, streamers and retail partners (including the Octonauts and Peter Rabbit)
  • Netflix on its acquisition of Millarworld— the comic book company behind Kick-Ass, Kingsman, and Old Man Logan— in Netflix’s first-ever company acquisition
  • An investment into a major music streaming service
  • ITV on its acquisition of The Garden Productions, So Television, and Big Talk*
  • A leading international advertising agency on its investment in a digital-first talent management company*
  • Ministry of Sound Recordings on its acquisition by Sony Music UK*

Media & Entertainment Commercial Work

  • SRMG in connection with its content and brand licensing arrangement with Warner Bros. Discovery
  • Savvy Gaming Group (a games and esports company) on various commercial agreements
  • A leading Middle East media company on various TV and digital media projects internationally
  • Deviation Games on its AAA title video game development deal with Sony Interactive Entertainment Europe
  • LifeScore, a music technology start-up, since its early days of operations, including on various third party integrations, such as the use of LifeScore’s technology with Twitch’s “Artificial” program
  • The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Ministry of Sport on its agreement with World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) for WWE events exclusively in MENA and in connection with music concerts at live sports events
  • Various clients on brand ambassador and endorsement arrangements with talent
  • Screenplay Bumilangit on its deal with Disney+
  • A major music streaming service on licensing arrangements
  • A leading subscription video on demand (SVOD) service on its output arrangements with major US studios and independents*
  • A leading US entertainment company on its output arrangements with numerous VOD and pay TV platforms*
  • Various major UK channel groups on their channel carriage arrangements with Sky and Virgin Media*

Sports Commercial Work

  • Sixth Street in connection with the formation of a new operating company and negotiations surrounding a new “Soccer Champions Tour” in the US featuring six of the world’s most iconic football clubs
  • DAZN on its exclusive media rights agreement with the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) to broadcast the AFC Champions League
  • Meta on its appointment as sponsor of the Rugby World Cup France 2023
  • World Surf League on hosting arrangements
  • Formula E in respect of arrangements with its teams, manufacturers, and sponsors
  • Buzzer Media Inc., a sports content app, on its media rights deal for NHL games
  • IMG and Endeavor on various matters
  • SAFF on its bid to host the Asia Football Cup 2027

Strategic Joint Ventures and Company Formation

  •  A Middle East investor on a joint venture with a major international digital media company
  • Parkwood Entertainment (Beyoncé’s multimedia company) in connection with intellectual property protection and licensing matters
  • BBC Studios (formerly BBC Worldwide) on complex program licensing and JV arrangements
  • Leading TV drama producers on the establishment of an independent production company*

Regulatory Advice

  • Snap, Inc. in relation to compliance with the EU Copyright Directive
  • Various production companies, broadcasters, and digital media services in connection with strategic business matters and regulatory advice on the EU Audiovisual Media Services (AVMS) Directive, EU Copyright Directive, and the UK Ofcom Broadcasting Code
  • A major sports body on content and regulatory matters in the context of its launch of a new digital content platform*

*Matter handled prior to joining Latham

Thought Leadership

  • Client training and articles on the EU AVMS Directive, EU Copyright Directive, and Online Harms 

Bar Qualification

  • England and Wales (Solicitor)


  • LPC, BPP Law School, 2008
  • LLB Law, University of Bristol, 2007