Hipgnosis Buys Rights to TMS Catalog, Including Lewis Capaldi’s ‘Someone You Loved’

Hipgnosis Songs Management has purchased 100% interest in publishing copyrights to 217 songs in the catalog of TMS, the British songwriting and production trio.

This latest acquisition includes the trio’s publishing copyrights, producer royalty streams, and neighboring rights, including “Someone You Loved” and “Before You Go” by Lewis Capaldi and “Don’t Be So Hard on Yourself” by Jess Glynne.

Comprised of Tom “Froe” Barnes, Benjamin Kohn, and Peter “Merf” Kelleher, TMS has already sold the copyrights of 121 of their other songs to Hipgnosis in the past, including songs recorded by G-Eazy, Sigma and Emeli Sandé. The writers’ share of ownership and royalties of the previous 121 songs is also included in the latest acquisition.

“Someone You Loved” has achieved 7-times platinum status in the U.K. since its release in 2018 and is touted as the U.K.’s most played song of all time on Spotify. Worldwide, it ranks as the fourth most streamed with 2.6 billion and counting. “Someone You Loved” was written by Lewis Capaldi, Samuel Roman, and the TMS trio, meaning Hipgnosis now controls three out of five writers’ shares of publishing. TMS also produced the track.

Hipgnosis Songs Management, the entity managing the publicly traded company’s catalog, acquired these songs on behalf of Hipgnosis Songs Capital, an investment vehicle established by Hipgnosis and Blackstone. The world’s largest alternative asset manager, Blackstone pledged $1 billion to further investment in music IP with Hipgnosis and also took a majority stake.

TMS has also worked with Dua Lipa, John Legend, Maroon 5, Ed Sheeran, Lily Allen and Bebe Rexha, One Direction, Cher, Ed Sheeran, Leona Lewis, Rita Ora, Jessie J, Lily Allen, Labrinth, JLS, Years & Years, Oily Murs, Ella Henderson, Birdy, Jem & The Holograms, Sinead Harnett, Kwabs and Dot Rotten.

It is not clear which, if any, of these artists’ songs are included in this deal. Financial terms weren’t disclosed.

TMS were represented by Paul Centellas at North Pole Management and Sonia Diwan at Sound Advice.

“Froe, Ben, Merf and their manager Paul Centellas have been an important part of the Hipgnosis family for many years now so it’s fantastic that we’ve been able to continue our relationship with this new acquisition including what will undoubtedly be a contender for song of the decade with Lewis Capaldi’s iconic ‘Someone You Loved,'” says Merck Mercuriadis, CEO and founder of Hipgnosis Song Management.

Barnes, Kohn and Kelleher (TMS) jointly add, We’re incredibly proud of this body of work and know Merck and the family at Hipgnosis will be excellent custodians of these copyrights in future. It’s incredible to see what they’ve built in just a few short years and we know they’ll continue to represent these songs with passion and commitment.”

“Nobody is doing more to elevate the standing and value of the songwriter than Merck and the team at Hipgnosis,” says Centellas, managing director, North Pole Management. “We’re very happy to entrust them with these incredible copyrights and look forward to working with them across various initiatives to ensure the songwriter is properly valued and remunerated in future. Without songwriters, there is no music business.”

Kristin Robinson