Hipgnosis Songs Fund, the investment trust that buys the intellectual property rights of popular songs, has acquired the music catalogue of award-winning producer and songwriter Rodney 'Darkchild' Jerkins.
Jerkins, who is also a rapper and composer, will join the investment adviser's advisory board with immediate effect.
Jerkins rose to fame in 1997 after co-writing and producing five songs for Mary J. Blige on her US number one and 3x US platinum-certified album Share My World.
He also co-wrote Destiny's Child's 1999 hit single Say My Name and was heavily involved in Brandy's Never Say Never album in 1998, which sold over 17 million copies worldwide and was nominated for a Grammy in 1999.
He also produced four songs for Whitney Houston's 1998 album My Love Is Your Love, which has sold over 10 million copies worldwide and was also nominated for a Grammy in 2000.
Closer to home, Jerkins was one of the main writers of the Spice Girls' final studio album Forever in 2000, collaborated with Michael Jackson on several tracks on his final studio album Invincible in 2001, and has continued to collaborate with Beyoncé as a solo artist.
Songs he has worked on that have seen the biggest streams on Spotify include Sam Smith's Stay With Me, Lady Gaga's Telephone, Justin Bieber's As Long as You Love Me and Jennifer Lopez's debut single If You Had My Love.
The acquisition means Hipgnosis owns 100% of Jerkins' writer's share of income in his early works, as well as 100% of his publishing interest and writer's share of income in his later works, which in total comprise 982 songs.
Merck Mercuriadis, founder of the Hipgnosis Songs Fund, said: "If you are talking songs of cultural importance, you only need to say Darkchild and everyone in the world knows you are talking about the very best of the very best.
"Rodney has created magic every step of the way in his magical career and we owe him a debt of gratitude for making the airwaves such a wonderful place over the past 25 years. I am delighted to welcome him to the Hipgnosis family and our advisory board.
"Nile Rodgers, The Dream, Dave Stewart, Giorgio Tuinfort, Starrah and I all look forward to his contributions."
Jerkins said his relationship with Hipgnosis represents a "mutual trust" in that the firm has placed its trust in him as an adviser, while he has entrusted Hipgnosis to "manage a catalogue that I have nurtured for more than 25 years".
"I have no doubt that Merck and Hipgnosis are the right home for my catalogue because they have demonstrated that they appreciate the art and craft that underlie the copyright and have constantly supported music creators," he added.