Universal Music Publishing Group Australia has inked an exclusive, world-wide sub-publishing deal with Dawn Raid Music Publishing, whose roster includes Kiwi hip-hop phenomenon Savage.

The new pact is a continuation of a long-term -- and fruitful -- association between the two companies, struck back in 2004. UMPG and Dawn Raid's joint venture has generated gold and platinum hits in New Zealand, Australia and the U.S., and vaulted Savage into the vanguard of New Zealand's hip-hop scene. In those four years, both parties boast combined sales through the JV of more than 1.3 million units, the lions' share from Savage.

Others artist and songwriters on the books include Adeaze, Mareko, Devolo, Alphrisk, Aaradhna and Brotha D along with producers/songwriters Aaron Ngawhika and Nate D, co-writers of Savage's "Swing," which blew up in the United States when it was synched in last year's successful comedy hit "Knocked Up."

Savage, who was born in South Auckland to Samoan parents, went on to win the international achievement award at the New Zealand Music Awards in October.

In a statement, Dawn Raid Entertainment CEO Andy Murnane says Universal Music Publishing have "proven themselves to be an active and progressive publisher that works hard for our artists and catalog of urban titles, with key placements in films like 'Knocked Up and 'Superbad' proving to be the catalyst that pushed our artist Savage into a million selling phenomenon in the U.S."

The new UMPG/Dawn Raid partnership will represent a new breed of New Zealand song-writers; the first signings include emerging producer DJ Montana and reggae artists Sweet and Irie.

"The team at Dawn Raid has created one of the most successful publishing companies in NZ, and we are now taking this amazing catalog to the world," comments UMPG's managing director, Bob Aird.

Through a separate exclusive recording arrangement, Universal Republic is poised to release Savage's debut international album "Savage Island" in North America on Dec. 23.