Merck Mercuriadis is founder and CEO of Hipgnosis Songs Fund, a UK-listed investment company established to “offer investors a pure-play exposure to songs and associated musical intellectual property rights”.
Hipgnosis has raised a total of over GBP £1.05 billion (gross equity capital) through its Initial Public Offering on 11 July 2018, and subsequent issues in April 2019, August 2019, October 2019, July 2020 and September 2020.
Mercuriadis is also the founder of Hipgnosis’ Investment Adviser, The Family (Music) Limited, which has assembled an Advisory Board of music industry experts that includes award-winning members of the artist, songwriter, publishing, legal, financial, recorded music and music management communities.
Mercuriadis is a veteran artist manger, having worked with globally successful recording artists such as Nile Rodgers, Elton John, Guns N’ Roses, Morrissey, Iron Maiden and Beyoncé, and hit songwriters such as Diane Warren, Justin Tranter and The-Dream.
Merck Mercuriadis’ Industry career
Merck Mercuriadis was born in Canada in 1963 and started his career in the music business in the ’80s at Richard Branson’s Virgin Records, during the rise of Simple Minds, Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark and UB40.
Mercuriadis later became the CEO of The Sanctuary Group plc, where he started working with Iron Maiden managers Rod Smallwood and Andy Taylor in 1986.
Sanctuary was sold to Universal Music Group in 2007 for £44.5m ($88m).
“The role of the manager needs to be reconsidered, particularly by the legal community, which seems to want to marginalize it.”
Merck Mercuriadis, speaking to MBW in 2019
In an interview with MBW in 2019, Mercuriadis suggested that “the role of the manager needs to be reconsidered, particularly by the legal community, which seems to want to marginalize it. One of the key issues is that managers should get paid for the work that they do in perpetuity.
He added: “That’s not to say they should get paid on an entire contract, but whichever songs or albums that come out during their tenure as manager, they should get paid in perpetuity. It’s no different to a producer.
“Your manager could be someone that you spend 10 hours a day with, and a lawyer’s telling you, ‘Don’t pay this person.’ Whereas you could go into a studio tomorrow with someone who you’ve only met once and who you’re never going to work with again, and you would owe them their royalty forever.”Music Business Worldwide