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Superstar music publishing deals

By Duncan Mil

August 25, 2022 - British rock group Pink Floyd could soon be almost half a billion dollars richer, with U.S. private equity group Blackstone competing to buy the band’s entire back catalogue.

Hipgnosis Song Management will make the deal valued at £400 million-plus (US$470 million), according to the Financial Times.

Last year, Blackstone took an ownership stake in Hipgnosis as part of a partnership that planned to deploy around $1 billion to buy music rights and record songs.

Blackstone has so far bought $341 million of back catalogues from Leonard Cohen, Justin Timberlake, Nile Rodgers, Nelly Furtado and country singer Kenny Chesney.

Artists such as Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan have sold their songbooks to music companies for hundreds of millions of dollars. At the same time, private equity firms piled into the market in search of steady returns from royalties powered by the rise of online streaming during a lengthy period of low-interest rates.

Rolling Stone magazine estimates Dylan’s 2020 deal with Universal Music to be between $300 million-$400 million.

Pink Floyd released 15 studio albums between 1967 and 2014, which include three of the most heralded and best-selling rock albums of all time: The Dark Side Of The Moon (1973), Wish You Were Here (1975) and The Wall (1979).

PUBLISHED: 25/08/2022; STORY: Graphic News; PICTURES: Getty Images