Show business » Shakira Sells the Rights to Her 145-Song Catalog

Hipgnosis Songs Fund Ltd. snapped up the 145-song catalog of Colombian pop star Shakira, doubling down on the thesis that hit records have become an attractive asset class.

The deal on Wednesday continued a busy 2021 for the London-based song-rights investment company, which last week announced deals for rights to music by producer Jimmy Iovine, Fleetwood Mac guitarist Lindsey Buckingham, and folk-rock star Neil Young.

Hipgnosis has acquired Shakira’s back catalog, including the writer’s share of income, according to a statement Wednesday. A price for the deal was not disclosed.

Hipgnosis “truly values artists and their creations and is an ally to songwriters everywhere who care deeply about the continued life of their songs,” Shakira said in the statement.

Shakira is the latest star to sell the rights to her songs

Shakira has become the latest artist to sell the rights to her music for a multi-million dollar sum. All 145 of her songs, including Hips Don't Lie, Whenever, Wherever and She Wolf, are included in the deal.

The songs have made her the best-selling female Latin artist of all time, with 80 million records sold worldwide.

The deal was struck with the Hipgnosis Song Fund, which also recently acquired Blondie and Neil Young's music.

Hipgnosis company did not disclose financial details of the sale, but it typically pays the equivalent of 15 years' royalties up front.

With tax relief, many walk away with "about 25 years worth of money in one fell swoop", the company's founder, Merck Mercuriadis, told the BBC last year.

That provides the artists with immediate financial security, while Hipgnosis - which owns the songs in perpetuity - hopes to profit by building new revenue streams for the music via film and TV licensing, merchandise, cover versions and performance royalties.

Shakira's hits came more recently than those "legacy" artists, but she is one of the most successful singer-songwriters of the last 25 years.

Since releasing her first album in 1991, at the age of 13, she has sold more than 80 million records, won three Grammy Awards and 12 Latin Grammy Awards.

Her first English-language album, Laundry Service, was bought by more than 13 million fans in 2001, while her hit singles include Whenever, Wherever, Underneath Your Clothes, Hips Don't Lie and the 2010 Fifa World Cup song Waka Waka (This Time For Africa), which topped the charts in 15 countries.

The star's most recent album, El Dorado, was certified diamond in the US. She is one of only three female artists to have two videos exceeding two billion views on YouTube. And her latest single, Girl Like Me, has spawned a viral dance craze on Tik Tok.

Last year, she starred in the Super Bowl half-time show alongside Jennifer Lopez, giving her song catalogue a further boost - and increasing its value to investors.

"She is a superb creator who has led the charge from what was massive physical success to now having bigger success in streaming than most of her contemporaries," said Mercuriadis in a statement.

"This is the result of her being a determined force of nature and having written songs the world is incredibly passionate about."

Financial security is the obvious reason. Rather than gambling that their songs will continue earn royalties, for the next 25 years, singers like Shakira get a lump sum up-front.

Hipgnosis's pitch to musicians is that they are not a traditional publisher, exploiting the rights of a composition, but a "song management company" that will ensure an artist's legacy by careful stewardship of their music.

For Shakira, another factor in selling up could be the €14.5m (£13m) tax bill she recently faced from Spanish government.

In a statement, the Colombian said Hipgnosis would be a "great home" for her music, and waxed lyrical about her love of songwriting.

"Being a songwriter is an accomplishment that I consider equal to and perhaps even greater than being a singer and an artist, " she said.

"At eight years old - long before I sang - I wrote to make sense of the world. Each song is a reflection of the person I was at the time that I wrote it, but once a song is out in the world, it belongs not only to me but to those who appreciate it as well.

"I'm humbled that songwriting has given me the privilege of communicating with others, of being a part of something bigger than myself."

В этом разделе

  • Shakira's pending trial for tax fraud in Spain

    Shakira and Gerard Pique at a meeting with lawyers in Barcelona
    Judge in Spain ruled that the Colombian singer and global superstar Shakira must stand trial over accusations of tax fraud. This development arrives after the singer and the Spanish government failed to...

    Watch It Once TikTok Challenge

    TikTok Challenge
    Shakira shows off her TikTok dance moves on The Tonight Show. You probably already knew Shakira is a better dancer than Jimmy Fallon, but it’s still fun to see them battle it out