Music publishing veteran Richard Rowe has been named executive vice president of Hipgnosis Songs, effective immediately, founder Merck Mercuriadis announced.
Rowe began his career at CBS Records in 1979 as a lawyer in its business affairs department before rising through the ranks to become president of Sony Music Publishing from 1991 to 2005. During his tenure the company merged with ATV Music Publishing, bringing the Beatles’ catalog into the company’s repertoire, as well as the acquisition of Acuff-Rose Music, which included the catalogs of Roy Orbison and the Everly Brothers.
After leaving Sony ATV, Rowe co-founded Round Hill Music in 2010, where as vice chairman, he helped bring in Carlin Music, Eddie Holland, ArtHouse (Kara DioGuardi), Eric Carmen and others.
The move is Hipgnosis’ latest in beefing up its executive team to keep up with its fast-growing repertoire, which has seen it spend more than $1.7 billion in less than three years on catalogs rangings from hitmakers like Timbaland and Jack Antonoff to superstars from Shakira to 50% of Neil Young’s publishing. On the executive front, the company acquired Big Deal publishing last fall — absorbing its staff of 35 people — and industry vets Ted Cockle and Amy Thomson as president and chief catalog officer, respectively.
Mercuriadis said, “Richard is one of the most important and successful executives in the music industry. He helped build Sony ATV into the company it is today and played an important role in bringing Round Hill Music Royalty Fund successfully to the market in the wake of Hipgnosis. His experience is second to none and he will be adding an additional layer of expertise to our investment and finance teams on data analysis and delivering best in class market disclosures.”
Rowe said, “I am proud of the work that I did at Round Hill Music over the last ten years and to have been part of its growth. Music publishing is evolving at a fast pace and Hipgnosis is leading that charge.”