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Hipgnosis Songs Fund Sells 20,000 Songs at a Discount Rate

Hipgnosis Songs Fund has found a buyer for a batch of “non-core songs” that have been up for sale since earlier this fall. In a filing Monday with the London Stock Exchange, where it is listed, HSF announced the sale of 20,000 tracks for $23.1 million, which it said reflects a 14.2% discount on the songs’ valuation as of late September.

The company said the sale of the songs, acquired in 2020 from Kobalt, is expected to net $22.6 million, which will be used to pay down a revolving credit facility and provide “greater headroom under its future covenant compliance reporting.” The buyer or buyers were not disclosed. The sale price represents a multiple of 9.6x net publisher share, according to a statement, and makes up approximately 1% of HSF’s investment portfolio value.

The specifics of these “non-core” songs have also not been disclosed. When the proposed sale was announced in September, the company’s board said the songs “require ongoing accounting and reporting obligations that take up significant bandwidth which can be better focused on active song management.”

Hipgnosis is comprised of three companies: Hipgnosis Song Management, Hipgnosis Songs Capital and Hipgnosis Songs Fund. The latter of the three has been mired in controversy in recent months after it was announced that the London-listed trust would not pay its investors a dividend because of new, lower projections for revenue.

On Oct. 26, investors of the fund overwhelmingly demanded structural changes to the music rights company, with more than 80% of Hipgnosis investors voting in favor of the board drawing up “proposals for the reconstruction, reorganization or winding-up of the company to shareholders for their approval within six months.”

Last month the company announced that the fund will not declare dividends before the new fiscal year, which begins next April, in order to ensure it has enough on its balance sheet to pay contractually-mandated catalog bonuses.

In its latest filing announcing the sale of unspecified songs, HSF also said it had appointed Singer Capital Markets as sole corporate broker and financial adviser, and Shot Tower Capital as lead adviser of the company’s strategic review.

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