Merck Mercuriadis’ Hipgnosis simply spent over $100m on a rock catalog, say MBW sources


After a spate of big deal announcements early in 2021, there would always be periods of relative calm for Hipgnosis and Merck Mercuriadis.

Some in the industry (not least Mercuriadis’ rivals) will have noticed with palpable relief that the Hipgnosis founder has largely kept himself to himself in recent months – as giant deals like the Paul Simon catalog sale to Sony are being concluded elsewhere .

However, MBW hears that Mercuriadis is about to make headlines in the music business again, with a major business worth more than $ 100 million.

Sources tell MBW that with this agreement, Hipgnosis will acquire “one of the most sought-after rock catalogs in Anglo-American music” and that an announcement is not too far away.

Our cast iron source tells us the deal is inked and weighs “in the same stadium that Merck paid for Neil Young”.

This is a reference to the deal that Hipgnosis announced earlier this year to acquire 50% of Young’s song catalog, which it is believed to have paid in the order of $ 150 million.

Mercuriadis would not be attracted to the rumor today (May 3rd) if contacted by MBW.

In January alone, Hipgnosis confirmed the acquisition of Shakira’s publisher’s catalog and the song catalog of Lindsey Buckingham from Fleetwood Mac in addition to the purchase of Neil Young.

Also in January, Hipgnosis announced the acquisition of producer license streams from Bob Rock (Michael Buble, Metallica) and Jimmy Iovine (Dire Straits, Patti Smith, U2).

In February, Hipgnosis raised an additional $ 100 million through a stock offering. That money came from existing investors and New York-based Morgan Stanley Investment Management Inc. – meaning this was the first time Hipgnosis had accepted a US-based institutional investor into its business.

In March, Hipgnosis returned to the deal table to announce the acquisition of the song catalog from Carole Bayer Sager, who wrote great hits like Nobody Does It Better and A Groovy Kind of Love.

Other major catalog deals in the music industry this year included Primary Wave’s recent purchase of songs and recordings created by Madonna employee Patrick Leonard and the acquisition of music publishing rights by Wilson Phillips members Chynna Phillips and Carnie Wilson.

Meanwhile, in February, Irving Azoff’s Iconic Artists Group rushed on to a deal valued at more than $ 100 million to acquire a number of rights to the Beach Boys, including a controlling stake in Catalog IP, as well as memorabilia and that Branding the band.

Iconic Artists acquired a song and recording catalog from David Crosby this year in addition to Linda Rondstadt’s music rights.

And financial giant KKR announced in February that it had acquired a catalog from star songwriter and One Republic frontman Ryan Tedder for around $ 200 million.

Since then, KKR has formed an alliance with BMG, under which both companies jointly seek copyrights for the acquisition.Music business worldwide

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