Peermusic has acquired Premier Muzik, All Right Music and Global Master Rights to form a neighbouring rights powerhouse.
The acquisition was spearheaded by Peermusic deputy CEO Mary Megan Peer and will combine the staff and services of all four companies. It followed originating discussions between CEO/chair Ralph Peer II and All Right Music’s Christophe Piot.
The neighbouring rights sector has expanded with increasing competition, including BMG’s entry into the business this summer.
Peermusic’s neighbouring rights client roster will be made up of the clients of the combined companies, encompassing over 300-plus record labels and 2,500-plus performers. Among those clients are major artists including Rihanna, Billie Eilish, Imagine Dragons, DJ Snake, Metallica, Jacques Brel, Jean-Michel Jarre, Leonard Bernstein, Megan Thee Stallion, Finneas, Lady A, Lang Lang, Lizzo, Panic! At The Disco, Migos and David Guetta.
Clients from All Right Music, Premier Muzik and Global Master Rights represented performers in 24% of the 2019 US year end Hot 100 songs and 40% of the 2019 year end Top 20 songs.
Peermusic, which did not have a neighbouring rights operation prior to the deal, plans to retain the staff of the existing companies with support from key Peermusic staff in technology, finance and legal.
All three acquired firms will continue to operate under their current names while identifying as Peermusic companies and out of their existing offices (Premier Muzik in Canada, All Right Music in France and Global Master Rights in the Netherlands).
The three companies add significant expertise in the neighbouring rights space to peermusic. The five principals of the three companies acquired have collectively over 60 years of experience in neighbouring rights, and all five will remain with Peermusic post-acquisition.
Christophe Piot started his career in publishing in 1990 and founded royalty administration service All Right Music in 2004.
Gino Olivieri founded neighbouring rights operation Premier Muzik in 1989. Gino Crescenza, Olivieri’s colleague at Premier, has over 35 years’ experience in music and has been with Premier since 2000.
Erik Veerman and Paul Smelt spent years working together in key positions at neighbouring rights organisation SENA before co-founding Global Master Rights in 2014.
“Given the challenging market artists and songwriters currently face, I’m happy to be able to offer our clients new revenue opportunities through neighbouring rights services,” said Mary Megan Peer. “Premier Muzik, All Right Music and Global Master Rights are first-class organisations and we’re very fortunate that Peermusic can draw on the knowledge, experience, and leadership of Christophe, Gino, Gino, Erik and Paul.”
“Neighbouring rights are something we’ve been interested in for a long time, but we wanted to be sure that when we expanded our business into that space we could offer the same high level of service and technology that Peermusic is known for,” added Ralph Peer II (pictured). “This remarkable series of deals that Mary Megan put together accomplishes that, and I’m excited for the value it will bring our clients.”
“I have known Peermusic for quite a long time and have been able to connect with their colleagues around the world,” said Christophe Piot. “They all share the same model of transparency and integrity we offer to our clients, so we are thrilled to make use of their global platform to offer more extensive services to our worldwide clients.”
The deal comes at a time when neighbouring rights collections will become more important than ever for artists, who have seen live income slump during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The deals were brokered by Gowling WLG (Canada), Gowling WLG (France) and Dikhoff Van Dongen Advocaten (Holland).
All Right Music was advised by Maximilien Jazani (Manswell Law Firm). Premier Muzik was advised by Ciro Cucciniello (Cucciniello Calandriello Attorneys Inc). Global Master Rights was advised by Richard Goemans (Venture Lawyers).
Subscribers can read our Music Week feature on royalty collections here.