Hipgnosis Songs Fund has acquired again.
This time, the UK based company has bought the music catalog of four-time Grammy winner Rodney Jerkins (aka Darkchild).
Hipgnosis has acquired 100% of Jerkins’ Writer’s Share of Income in his early works and 100% of his Publishing interest and Writer’s Share of Income in his later works, which in total comprise 982 songs.
Jerkins will also be joining the Advisory Board of Hipgnosis’ Investment Advisor, The Family (Music) Limited, with immediate effect.
The news of the acquisition comes just one week after Hipgnosis, which trades on the London Stock Exchange, increased the amount of debt it can access in order to continue its aggressive acquisition strategy, having secured an increase to its Revolving Credit Facility from GBP £150m (circa $188m) to USD $400m.
That news came just two weeks after the company raised nearly $300m via the sale of C shares.
Rodney Jerkins is a producer, rapper, composer and songwriter who rose to prominence in 1997 having co-written, arranged and produced five songs for Mary J. Blige’s US No.1 and 3x US platinum certified album Share My World, including the hit single I Can Love You.
Following this in 1998, Rodney Jerkins co-wrote and produced the majority of Brandy’s Never Say Never album which has sold over 17 million copies worldwide, including the hit single The Boy Is Mine, which was nominated for three Grammy Awards, winning Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals and was the best-selling song of the year in the US.
He also co-wrote and produced three songs for Whitney Houston’s album My Love Is Your Love, which has sold over 10 million copies worldwide, including the hit single It’s Not Right But It’s Okay, which was No.1 in 10 countries and won the Grammy Award for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.
In 1999, Rodney Jerkins started his collaboration with Destiny’s Child, co-writing and producing their US No.1 Say My Name.
It is certified 3x platinum in the US and was nominated for four Grammy Awards, winning “Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals” and “Best R&B Song”.
Rodney Jerkins also co-wrote and produced two US platinum certified singles on Destiny’s Child’s final album Destiny Fulfilled with the Grammy nominated Lose My Breath and Cater 2 U.
Rodney Jerkins continued to collaborate with Beyoncé as a solo artist with key hits including her UK No.1 single Déjà Vu, which was recognised as the “Best Song of 2006” at the Music of Black Origin (MOBO) Awards.
In 2000, Rodney Jerkins was one of the main writers of the Spice Girls’ final album Forever, including co-writing and co-producing the UK No.1 singles Holler and Let Love Lead The Way.
Later the same year he collaborated with Michael Jackson on several tracks on his worldwide No.1 album Invincible, which has sold over 6 million copies, including the lead single You Rock My World, which reached No.2 in the UK and became Michael Jackson’s last US Top 10 hit.
Rodney Jerkins is also renowned for his collaborations with some of the biggest artists of the of the last 25 years, including:
- Sam Smith on his single Stay With Me, having been certified 9x platinum in the US and at least platinum in 14 further countries. The song peaked at No.1 in the US, the UK as well as 12 other charts and won both “Record of the Year” and “Song of the Year” at the 2015 Grammy Awards.
- Lady Gaga on her UK No.1 Telephone, featuring Beyoncé, which reached No.1 on 20 charts worldwide and sold over 7m digital copies in 2010 making it one of Lady Gaga’s best-selling singles.
- Jennifer Lopez on one of the best-selling singles of 1999 If You Had My Love, which topped the Billboard Hot 100 for five weeks and is certified platinum in the US.
- Justin Bieber on his 4x US platinum certified As Long as You Love Me.
- Toni Braxton on her Grammy Award winning He Wasn’t Man Enough.
These songs have been streamed over 2.2 billion times on Spotify alone.
“Rodney has created magic every step of the way in his magical career and we owe him a debt of gratitude for making the airwaves such a wonderful place over the last 25 years.”
Merck Mercuriadis, Hipgnosis Songs Fund
Merck Mercuriadis, Founder of Hipgnosis Songs Fund Limited and The Family (Music) Limited, said: “If you are talking songs of cultural importance you only need to say Darkchild and everyone in the world knows you are talking about the very best of the very best.
“Rodney has created magic every step of the way in his magical career and we owe him a debt of gratitude for making the airwaves such a wonderful place over the last 25 years.
“I am delighted to welcome him to the Hipgnosis Family and our Advisory Board. Nile Rodgers, The-Dream, Dave Stewart, Giorgio Tuinfort, Starrah and I all look forward to his contributions.”
“I have no doubt that Merck and Hipgnosis are the right home for my catalog because they have demonstrated that they appreciate the art and craft that underlie the copyright and have constantly supported music creators.”
Rodney Jerkins added: “My relationship with Hipgnosis represents a relationship of mutual trust: Hipgnosis has placed its trust in me as an advisor, and I have entrusted Hipgnosis to manage a catalog that I have nurtured for 25+ years.
“I have no doubt that Merck and Hipgnosis are the right home for my catalog because they have demonstrated that they appreciate the art and craft that underlie the copyright and have constantly supported music creators.
“I’m thankful for the music that God has enabled me to develop these past 25 years, and I’m excited, inspired, and motivated for what the future holds in the next phase of my career.”Music Business Worldwide