Hipgnosis board accepts Blackstone's $1.6 billion offer

Hipgnosis board accepts Blackstone's $1.6 billion offer

The Hipgnosis bidding war has escalated with Blackstone making another counter-offer for the songs fund.

The US private equity giant’s improved offer to the Hipgnosis Songs Fund’s board of $1.30 per share has been accepted (following an earlier proposal rather than a formal offer). It values the company at $1.57 billion.

It trumps the improved offer of $1.25 per share made by Concord last week, following the initial intervention by Blackstone.

As well as being a 4% increase on the Concord offer, the Blackstone deal represents a 48.1% premium on the closing share price on April 17 before the offer period. It is subject to a shareholder vote.

The Hipgnosis catalogue includes shares in songs and catalogues by artists including Shakira, Journey, Ed Sheeran, Neil Young, Christine McVie, Lindsey Buckingham, Blondie, Nile Rodgers, Pusha T,  and dozens more.

It follows a turbulent period for Hipgnosis Songs Fund, which implemented a strategic review following a shareholder vote.

Robert Naylor, chair of Hipgnosis, said: “The board is pleased to unanimously recommend this $1.6 billion offer for Hipgnosis from Blackstone. Since we started our strategic review, we have been clearly focused on looking at all the options to deliver shareholder value. We are delighted that, following competitive interests in acquiring Hipgnosis, our investors now have a chance to immediately realise their holding at an increased premium.”

Qasim Abbas, senior managing director of Blackstone, said: “Our offer price, which has been unanimously recommended by the board, represents a significant premium to the unaffected share price and allows shareholders to realise immediate and attractive value for their shareholding. The offer is the result of extensive discussion and negotiations with the board and provides shareholders the certainty of cash today.

“Blackstone is a long-term investor with deep experience of investing across the media and entertainment sectors, including in music rights. The breadth of the Blackstone platform, combined with our operational expertise, will support and enhance the value of the acquired rights.”

Blackstone is already a partner with Hipgnosis Song Management on a separate investment fund.


author twitter FOLLOW Andre Paine

For more stories like this, and to keep up to date with all our market leading news, features and analysis, sign up to receive our daily Morning Briefing newsletter

subscribe link free-trial link

follow us...