Hipgnosis Songs Funds Limited (Hipgnosis) has further added to its song catalogue, acquiring 162 of US record producer L.A Reid’s hits, including publishing and writing credits on songs from Whitney Houston, Bobby Brown and many more. Hipgnosis have appointed the legendary music producer to the Investment Advisor’s Advisory Board, in addition to acquiring 100% of L.A Reid’s publishing interests and writer’s share of income to the 162 songs.
L.A Reid has been in the music industry for over 4 decades as a singer and song writer. At the beginning of his career, his most notable work was with Boyz II Men, whose hit song ‘End of the Road’, won 2 Grammys and topped the US Singles Charts for over 13 weeks, later becoming Billboard’s biggest song of 1992. In 2004, Reid became instrumental in bringing Mariah Carey back to the top of the charts, with a 10x platinum album, ‘The Emancipation of Mimi’, selling over 404,000 copies in its first week.
Merck Mercuriadis, Founder of Hipgnosis and The Family (Music) Limited stated: “L.A. Reid has become so successful as a music executive and developer of some of the most important artists in music over the last 30 years that people often forget that he is an incomparable songwriter. It’s a great pleasure to welcome L.A. Reid and his incredible set of songs to the Hipgnosis family.”
L.A. Reid also stated: “I can’t imagine a better home for my lifetime of music and songs than Hipgnosis. Merck and his dream team truly value artists and their creative vision, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to partner with them for this exciting new chapter.”
Hipgnosis has consistently been adding to its songs portfolio since it was founded in 2018, in its first year acquiring some 6,000 quality songs. Despite market downfalls in 2020, Hipgnosis have continued to add to its song portfolio and by July 2020 it had reached nearly 13,300 songs. At the time of writing, Hipgnosis reportedly has over £800m in net assets.
Although Hipgnosis were met with some skepticism in 2018 upon launch, the Seneca Global Income and Growth Trust plc added Hipgnosis to its diverse portfolio in late 2018. Today, streaming is a normal way of life for many, it is difficult to imagine going out and buying a CD or a vinyl. Streaming services are now being pre-installed in many new cars, and with the addition of voice-controlled devices such as Amazon Alexa and Google Nest, it is likely that streaming is here to stay.
Moreover, Mercuriadis states in Hipgnosis’ ‘Capital Market Day 2020’ video, that the company is continuing to add ‘incredible songs, that are remarkable to be adding to their portfolio’ ranging from Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance to Barry Manilow’s Copacabana.
The video includes a personalised video message from Lorriza a key member of ‘Wu-Tang Clan’, whom Mercuriadis states is ‘arguably, the greatest producer in hip hop… his work in the Wu-Tang Clan, in the [90s], set the scene for the Jay Z’s and the Kanye Wests’ who followed in their tracks.’
Similarly, Rodney ‘Darkchild’ Jerkins also features in a personalised video message, Jerkins previously worked alongside Destiny’s Child and the Spice Girls as well as many more, of which Mercuriadis states ‘is some of the most important work in this space in the past 30 years.’
Hipgnosis’ ‘Capital Market Day 2020’ video illustrates the sheer variety of music that Hipgnosis now have in their portfolio. For any music enthusiast, there is almost certainly a song that you will love in their portfolio. The full video can be watched here: (Third-party site) https://www.hipgnosissongs.com/ if you’re interested to find out more.
For the Seneca Global Income and Growth Trust plc (SIGT), we believe the music royalty market is on the cusp of a new era. We have been investing in songwriter royalties and value their bond-like characteristics. Investors can own the rights until 70 years after the death of the writer or last living co-writer and the rights are effectively an annuity-like cash flow. When investing in Hipgnosis, the fund manager of SIGT understood the broad cash flows and pricing models but also the need for industry experts who add value through ‘stock selection’. The Hipgnosis team is comprised of industry veterans, including songwriters and CEOs to CFOs from the music industry. We are pleased to see them continuing to build their expertise by appointing L.A Reid to their Investment Advisor’s Advisory Board.
Seneca Global Income & Growth Trust plc
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