30/09/2022

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Hipgnosis Songs Fund didn’t buy a single catalog in the 6 months to end of March. It still grew in value by $140m.

5 min read
Hipgnosis Songs Fund didn’t buy a single catalog in the 6 months to end of March. It still grew in value by 0m.

Hipgnosis Tracks Fund has now (July 14) revealed its complete-year financial final results for the 12 months to finish of March.

Prior to we dig into that, and our headline previously mentioned, the now-normal little bit of housekeeping:

  • Hipgnosis Songs Fund (HSF) is the publicly-traded Uk fund that IPO’d on the London Stock Exchange in 2018
  • Its expense advisor is Hipgnosis Music Administration (HSM), which is operate by Merck Mercuriadis and his staff
  • Blackstone very last calendar year privately invested a billion US bucks in a new Hipgnosis fund, Hipgnosis Music Money (HSC), in addition to creating an undisclosed investment in Hipgnosis Tune Administration
  • The latter corporation (HSM) is not only tasked with discovering catalog acquisition possibilities for each HSF and HSC, but also with maximizing returns from their owned catalogs vis sync, marketing and advertising, streaming and many others.

What was significantly intriguing about Hipgnosis Songs Fund (the United kingdom-shown entity) in the 2nd half of its newest fiscal yr? It didn’t commit a single penny on catalogs.

Obtaining revolutionized the catalog-acquisition industry due to the fact 2018 – and been a key catalyst in Wall Street’s understanding of audio as an “asset class” – HSF stood continue to (acquisition-intelligent) in the 6 months to end of March 2022.

How do we know? For the reason that in its half-calendar year fiscal report (masking the 6 months to end of September 2021), revealed past year, Hipgnosis verified it owned 146 Catalogues across 65,413 songs.

And today, in its full-year fiscal report (covering the 12 months to close of March 2022), Hipgnosis confirms that it owns… 146 Catalogues throughout 65,413 songs.

None of this is a surprise: As MBW stated to you past 12 months, Hipgnosis Songs Fund raised $215 million by way of the general public marketplaces in July 2021 (which it then spent on catalogs from artists/writers like the Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Monsters & Strangerz, Christine McVie and far more).

Following that increase, however, the business pledged it would not elevate any far more money on the public markets until finally at the very least Q2 2022 (a period we now uncover ourselves in).

Meanwhile, personal debt-clever, HSF seems fully leveraged underneath the existing fiscal regulations governing the managing of its company.

(By contrast, Hipgnosis Tracks Funds, the Blackstone-backed private fund, has been active obtaining catalogs by the likes of Leonard Cohen and Justin Timberlake for nine-figure sums in modern months.)

So here’s the thing: For when, for now, the attention-grabbing part about Hipgnosis Songs Fund (in the six months to end of March) is not what it purchased it’s how considerably it grew in price.

In accordance to an unbiased valuer quoted in HSF’s economic filings (and as documented by MBW final yr), Hipgnosis Tracks Fund’s portfolio of copyrights was worthy of USD $2.55 billion at the close of September 2021.

Six months later on (as for every HSF’s new once-a-year report) and that exact independent valuer now says that – as of conclude of March 2022 – Hipgnosis Tracks Fund’s portfolio was worthy of $2.69 billion.

In other phrases, over the training course of 6 months, Hipgnosis purchased very little at all… and even now grew in value by $140 million.


The portion of HSF’s new report that reveals its $2.69bn value as of conclude of March 2022

Explains Hipgnosis Tracks Fund founder, Merck Mercuriadis, in HSF’s new annual report: “In the 2nd 50 percent of our fiscal yr 2021/2022, as most world limitations have eased and current market growth has returned, we have now also shown that our acquisition approach and disruptive Song Management strategy leaves us well-positioned to outperform.

“Our technique to purchase only the most prosperous and culturally essential Tracks, which includes 67 of the 271 Tracks that have been played more than 1 billion occasions on Spotify, has delivered like-for-like Streaming advancement of 19% in the 2nd fifty percent of our fiscal calendar year by itself.”

“In the second fifty percent of our fiscal calendar year 2021/2022, as most world wide restrictions have eased and sector expansion has returned, we have now also shown that our acquisition technique and disruptive Tune Management approach leaves us nicely-positioned to outperform.”

Mercuriadis adds that this streaming development “outperformed our Independent Valuer’s expectations, and together with the initial time recognition of the worth of revenue generated from the now recognized digital way of living platforms that have emerged, led to an yearly boost in our Operative NAV of 9.9%”.

A person vital variable in the expansion of Hipgnosis Songs Fund’s worth: The firm’s once-a-year report says that it saw a “20% raise of formal synch licences authorized in the 6 months to [March 31, 2022] versus the very first fifty percent of the fiscal year”.


A bunch of other financial information and facts is disclosed in Hipgnosis Tracks Fund’s new yearly report, also.

Throughout the total calendar year (to conclusion of March 2022), HSF’s gross income amplified by 24.7% to USD $200.4 million (31 March 2021: $160.7 million) partly thanks to the catalogue acquisitions the agency executed in the to start with 50 percent of its fiscal year.

Internet profits of $168.3 million amplified by 21.7% 12 months-on-year (31 March 2021: $138.3 million), adhering to royalty cost deductions of $32. million (31 March 2021: $22.5 million).

And EBITDA amplified by 21.8% to $129.9 million (31 March 2021: $106.7 million).

HSF posted an running loss of $16.7m in the calendar year (see beneath).


HSF’s consolidated statement of revenue for the 12 months to close of March 2022

Added Mercuriadis: “Over the previous 4 yrs we have acquired an incomparable portfolio of some of the most effective and culturally vital Tracks of all time, now valued at $2.7 billion. The exceptional energy of our Catalogue is demonstrated by the 9.9% raise in the Operative NAV to $1.8491 for every share, as documented by our Impartial Portfolio Valuer, and a Full NAV Return of 14.2%. This is mostly driven by our legendary Tunes outstripping the standard market place growth in Streaming, significantly in the 2nd 50 % of 2021, providing validation for our financial investment tactic.

“As we glance ahead, we carry on to count on powerful world-wide income advancement driven by the continued adoption of compensated-for Streaming. Inspite of the macro-financial environment, the attractiveness of the music Streaming proposition continues to increase.

“It is the least expensive-price enjoyment membership provider and, with its providing of a in the vicinity of finish repertoire of global music, gives the most complete offering of the on-need, enjoyment subscription companies.

“This view is shared by the main voices in the sector, like Goldman Sachs, who not too long ago upgraded their double-digit annual advancement forecast by way of to 2030 in their gold conventional Music In The Air: Music however sounds fantastic in a macro downturn increasing world field forecasts report.”

Continued Mercuriadis: “With crystal clear proof of a solid recovery in world Effectiveness profits, the current CRB III dedication to increase Streaming royalty charges for songwriters, and possible for even more advancements in the impending CRB IV dedication, all in addition to the extremely sturdy advancement in Streaming, I consider we are searching forward to extremely interesting market place conditions.

“Given our incomparable collection of iconic Tracks, I imagine Hipgnosis is correctly positioned and will carry on to supply outstanding returns for our Shareholders.

“Thank you to our Shareholders for your extraordinary aid, our Board, brokers and the extraordinary songwriters who have entrusted us with their incomparable Music.”

Underneath, taken from the Hipgnosis Tracks Cash yearly report – which you go through in total here – you can see the entirety of catalog acquired by the organization to day.


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