Round Hill Music Acquires Johnny Rzeznik of Goo Goo Dolls' Publishing

Johnny Rzeznik of Goo Goo Dolls
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Johnny Rzeznik of Goo Goo Dolls performs at The Fillmore on Oct. 25, 2018 in Detroit.

Round Hill Music has acquired the writer and majority co-publishing shares of Johnny Rzeznik of the Goo Goo Dolls' songwriting catalog in a deal that sources say cost about $18 million.

That catalog includes such Goo Goo Doll hits as "Iris," "Name," "Slide," "Black Balloon" and "Better Days" and fan favorites like "Domino" and "Only One."

The deal, first reported by Music Business Worldwide, initially includes Rzeznik’s writer share and co-publishing ownership -- which accounts for about 70-75% of the revenue -- according to sources. The remaining co-publishing stake of about 25%-30% is controlled by BMG, they say, which also serves as the publishing administrator. That BMG arrangement is expected to end sometime in the next two to five years and when it does, per the new deal, that stake will be owned by Round Hill as well, sources say.

Sources further suggest the catalog generates about $900,000 to $1 million in annual revenue. At the lower revenue number, that means the catalog traded on about a 20 times net publisher share multiple. That appears to be the going rate for hot iconic songs nowadays, like "Iris," which is said to generate about half the catalog’s revenue.

The Rzeznik catalog was shopped by Peter Paterno of Kings, Holmes, Paterno & Soriano LLP, sources say, but Paterno did not respond to a request for comment at time of publishing. Rzeznik's representative declined comment.

Round Hill CEO Josh Gruss declined to discuss any details of the deal, but commented on the real estate expression "location, location, location" and said when Round Hill is looking for music asset acquisition it uses the guidance of "quality, quality, quality" in focusing on trophy properties. The Rzeznik catalog exemplifies execution of that philosophy, Gruss said: "We have a lot of comfort for a deal like this because of that indelible nature of the Goo Goo Dolls music."

Besides this deal, Round Hill is in the process of shopping its Round Hill Music Royalty Fund III to institutional investors with the goal of raising $300 million. Sources suggest the firm is about half way to its goal.

In the past, Round Hill has acquired Carlin America, a Big Loud Shirt Industries song catalog and such songwriter publishing catalogs as the North America rights to six classic Beatles songs, while also buying Offspring's master recording catalog, among others.