Justin Bieber Sells Rights to Songs for $200m

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Bieber, one of the best-selling artists of the 21st Century, is now the latest musician to join a growing group of artists who have cashed out on their catalogues.

Canadian superstar Justin Bieber has sold his share of the rights to his music to Hipgnosis Songs Capital, the company announced on Tuesday, in a deal reported to be worth over $200m.

Hipgnosis now owns the 28-year-old singer’s stake in some of the biggest hits of recent years, and that includes “Baby” and “Sorry”.

The move means Hipgnosis, a $1bn venture between financial giant Blackstone and the British Hipgnosis Song Management, will receive a payment every time a song they own part of is played in public.

In the deal, the company acquired the pop star’s 100% publishing rights, master recordings rights, and neighbouring rights to his 290-song back catalogue released before 31 December 2021. That includes his writer’s share.

Bieber’s recorded music masters will continue to be owned by Universal Music Group.

The musician’s longtime manager Scooter Braun said: “I’m so proud of him and all those involved over the years in helping amass this incredible body of work. Justin is truly a once-in-a-generation artist and that is reflected and acknowledged by the magnitude of this deal.”

Hipgnosis has not disclosed the terms of the deal, but Billboard and Variety reported it was worth over $20m.

According to the Wall Street Journal, this agreement is the largest music-rights acquisition for Hipgnosis, which acquired Justin Timberlake’s song-catalog rights last year for a reported $100m.

Artists are increasingly selling stakes in their work to music funds – including Shakira, who has also struck a deal with Hipgnosis. But the trend is more common among older artists.

In the last two years, music legends Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen both sold back catalogue rights to Sony, with Springsteen receiving a reported $500m (£376m) for the sale of his life’s work.

The Hipgnosis Songs Fund is building up a catalogue of hit songs – and inviting big institutional investors to share in the proceeds. The fund floated on the London Stock Exchange in July 2018.

Its founder, Merck Mercuriadis, previously said hit songs can be “more valuable than gold or oil”.

“The impact of Justin Bieber on global culture over the last 14 years has truly been remarkable,” Mercuriadis said, announcing the latest deal.