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Streaming fuels growth for UK music industry

February 19, 2014

Beady_EyeThe BPI, in its annual review of record company income, has reported that the UK recorded music industry’s revenues grew in 2013.

Driven by an 11.9 per cent rise in digital revenues from strong digital album sales and a surge in streaming, the UK recorded music industry saw an overall 1.9 per cent increase in its revenues  last year to stand at £730.4 million – up from £716.8 million generated in 2012.

The UK music business hit a significant milestone in 2013, with digital revenues now accounting for 50 per cent of total UK record industry trade revenues.

Income from music streaming services such as Spotify and Deezer constituted the fastest-growing sector over the twelve month period.  Streaming revenues increased by 41 per cent – and its three main constituent elements: subscriptions to premium services, ad-supported ‘free-to-consumer’ streaming, and Cloud-related services combined to generate around £77 million for record companies in 2013.

Subscription was the most important component, worth £54.7 million and accounting for 71 per cent of the sector’s income.   Ad-supported services, which enable ‘free-to-consumer’ streaming, grew by 31 per cent on 2012, contributing £19 million to industry revenues, while Cloud-related services, such as Google, Apple and Amazon’s locker services are now beginning to produce meaningful revenues, contributing over £3 million to industry income last year.

Whilst it did not match the record levels seen in 2012 (down 4.4 per cent on the period), record company income from downloaded tracks remained strong at £121.7 milliom – the second-highest total of all time.

Geoff Taylor, Chief Executive BPI, said: 
”The UK’s record labels have reimagined their businesses for a world of instant mobile, global access to music, driven by social media.  Rapid growth from digital albums and music streaming services such as Spotify powered a rebound in revenues in 2013.  This will further boost investment in talented British artists… With digital increasingly becoming its key source of revenue, Britain’s music industry is fit and ready to seize the global opportunities it offers.”

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