Hipgnosis Songs Fund has been snapping up a series of publishing catalogues in big-money acquisitions, and it has no plans to stop – but it needs another injection of funding to fuel its ambition.
“With over £1 billion of acquisitions in the pipeline covering some of the most important songs and artists of all time, much of it in exclusivity already, we have just launched a placing targeting £200 million of new equity financing to help capture this pipeline and deliver further returns for our shareholders,” announced founder Merck Mercuriadis in his introduction to the company’s annual report.
There are stats a-plenty to pore over in the filing. By the end of March this year, Hipgnosis had raised more than £625m of financing, and spent £679m to amass a collection of 54 catalogues and 13,291 individual songs. It says that this catalogue has been independently valued at £757m, while Mercuriadis took a shot at rivals by claiming that the catalogue “is earning £4,868 per song vs something less than £150 per song for our competitors”. In its last fiscal year, which ended on 31 March, Hipgnosis generated revenues of £64.7m, up from £7.2m the year before. It recorded a net profit of £25.2m for the year.