Zayn Malik Simon Cowell Made it Happen for Me

7/30/2015 6:47 AM PDT

Zayn Malik knows who's buttering his bread.

We got Zayn leaving Warwick in Hollywood Wednesday night, when our photog invited the former One Direction singer to give a shout-out to Simon Cowell, and he happily obliged.

Simon engineered and negotiated Zayn's new solo contract with RCA, and Malik stands to make a fortune as a result. 

All hail to King Simon!