Blackstone-powered Hipgnosis Song Management (HSM) is reportedly vying to strike a roughly $500 million deal for the catalog of Pink Floyd.
Multiple outlets are reporting on the rumored purchase effort from Hipgnosis Song Management, which is backed by Blackstone and serves as the “investment adviser” of Hipgnosis Songs Fund. The latter is the publicly traded entity (SONG on the London Stock Exchange) that’s scooped up all manner of catalogs in recent years.
But with gross debt of $600 million, the Fund has largely paused its spending spree in 2022, whereas HSM has bought song rights from the likes of country star Kenny Chesney, the estate of Leonard Cohen, and Justin Timberlake through the year’s initial eight months.
Now, according to a spate of reports, including from FT and Reuters, Blackstone and Hipgnosis Song Management are making a serious play for the music IP of Pink Floyd.
Notwithstanding the difficult economic climate and related signs of a cooldown in the previously red-hot catalog space, however, Pink Floyd has for several months been shopping its body of work, per reports. (In retrospect, the nearly 60-year-old group’s decisions to add 12 early live albums to streaming services, release its first new song in almost 30 years, and join TikTok may well have been part of a carefully developed strategy.)
Neither Hipgnosis nor Blackstone has commented publicly on the curiously timed reports of their pursuing the Pink Floyd catalog, but the mentioned Reuters account cautioned that the entities are “not close to striking a deal” for the song rights.
Moreover, these latest updates on the long-running battle for the group’s catalog have also acknowledged a possible half-billion-dollar price tag, or about the same cost that’s been attached to the IP since rumors of the sale began circulating.
Time will tell whether the transaction can in fact generate the massive sum – though it’s worth noting that multiple other parties are likewise looking to buy the Pink Floyd catalog, according to reports.
To be sure, Warner Music Group (which has already earmarked a substantial amount of capital for song rights), BMG (which has itself committed to dropping up to $1 billion on song acquisitions in 2022), and One Media iP are reportedly in the running as well.