Canadian music star’s deal with Hipgnosis Songs covers his publishing copyrights of all of his music released prior to December 31, 2021 as well as his artist rights to lucrative master recordings and neighbouring rights royalties.
Pop juggernaut Justin Bieber has sold his music publishing and recording catalogue shares to the Blackstone-backed Hipgnosis Songs Capital for $200 million, the company has said, marking the industry’s latest blockbuster rights deal.
Hipgnosis did not publicly disclose terms of the deal, but a source close to the matter told AFP news agency that the deal announced on Tuesday was worth around $200 million.
The staggering sums — Springsteen’s catalog went to Sony for a reported half a billion dollars — are considered safe bets both for older artists getting their finances in order and investors who can count on consistent returns from time-tested music and the viability of streaming.
According to the deal, Hipgnosis has acquired Bieber’s publishing copyrights to his 290-song back catalogue — all of his music released prior to December 31, 2021— including his writer’s share.
It also includes his artist rights to his lucrative master recordings as well as neighbouring rights royalties — a right that sees its owner receive a payment every time a song is played publicly.
But while Hipgnosis will receive the revenues, Bieber’s longtime home Universal will continue to administer the catalogue, Variety reported.
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Welcome to the Hipgnosis family @justinbieber ❤️ pic.twitter.com/9VtOdJmSWL
— Hipgnosis Songs (@HipgnosisSongs) January 24, 2023
After the Canada native was discovered on YouTube as a teen, Bieber skyrocketed to global fame, selling more than 150 million records.
He has charted eight number-one records on Billboard’s top albums list, and his songs have streamed on Spotify alone more than 32 billion times.
“The impact of Justin Bieber on global culture over the last 14 years has truly been remarkab le,” said Hipgnosis chief Merck Mercuriadis, a longtime music industry executive, in a statement.
“At only 28 years of age, he is one of a handful of defining artists of the streaming era that has revitalized the entire music industry, taking a loyal and worldwide audience with him on a journey from teen phenomenon to culturally important artist.”
Bieber’s health has suffered recently, with the star going on an indefinite touring hiatus after he revealed he’d been diagnosed with Ramsay Hunt Syndrome, a rare complication of shingles that for him caused partial facial paralysis.
The owners of a song’s publishing rights receive a cut in a number of scenarios, including radio play and streaming, album sales, and use in advertising and movies. Recording rights govern reproduction and distribution.
The flurry of sales came amid a wider conversation over artists’ ownership of the work, amplified in large part by Taylor Swift, who has found resounding success as she re-records her first six albums so she can control their master recording rights.
That move stemmed from Swift’s very public feud with Scooter Braun, the music manager whose company once owned her original masters, and later sold them to the investment firm Shamrock Holdings.
Braun has been Bieber’s manager for 15 years, and in a statement said “when Justin made the decision to make a catalogue deal we quickly found the best partner to preserve and grow this amazing legacy was Merck and Hipgnosis.”
“Justin is truly a once in a generation artist and that is reflected and acknowledged by the magnitude of this deal.”
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Source: TRTWorld and agencies
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