Michael Gudinski's Mushroom Music has purchased Australia's Festival Music Publishing from News Corp. The acquisition formally took place Nov. 22 and is retroactive to Oct. 31.

Michael Gudinski's Mushroom Music has purchased Australia's Festival Music Publishing from News Corp. The acquisition formally took place Nov. 22 and is retroactive to Oct. 31.

Melbourne-based Mushroom Music is the largest independent publisher in Australia and New Zealand. Its catalog includes works by Tim and Neil Finn, Nick Cave, Kylie Minogue, the Vines, Yothu Yindi and the Datsuns. It also represents 30 international catalogs, including Chrysalis Music and Mute Music.

The 24 Australian and New Zealand writers on Festival's roster includes hit bands Powderfinger and George, Tim Rogers of You Am I, Josh Abrahams, Amiel and Barry Palmer.

"Without a doubt, we now have the largest and most important catalog of Australian and New Zealand music," Ian James, managing director of Mushroom Music, tells Billboard.biz

He adds that "Mushroom and Festival publishing have traveled parallel paths, and Michael Gudinski was eager to bring their heritage factor into (the Mushroom) building. We have been strong competitors, and the Festival's aggressive acquisition in recent years in A&R and international catalog will now work for us." James declined to reveal a purchase price.

Festival had four full-time staffers, of whom creative manager Gary Seeger and copyright and royalties administrator Linda Zupan stay on.

When Gudinski sold his share of Mushroom Records to Rupert Murdoch's News Corp in 1998, he retained the publishing company. Murdoch combined the Festival and Mushroom record arm; the amalgamated company became Festival Music Records.

As previously reported, Warner Music Australia purchased FMR on Oct. 5 in a deal that comes into effect this Monday (Nov. 28).

In a separate pact, Sydney-based ABC Music Publishing has reappointed Mushroom as its administrator. The contract was put to tender this year. Eloise Nolan, head of ABC Music Publishing, said she re-upped with Mushroom "based on the strength of their presentation and the added value they were able to bring to ABC's songwriters and composers, both in regards to administration and creative support."