New issue of Music & Copyright with Brazil country report

The latest issue of Music & Copyright is now available for subscribers to download. Here are some of the highlights.

Streaming the big positive for UMG and SME in latest financial results
French media company Vivendi and electronics giant Sony Corp. have reported financial details for their respective music subsidiaries, UMG and SME. Although revenue gains at reported rates for UMG in the first half of this year were affected due to the strength of the euro against the dollar, at constant rates UMG’s performance was positive. Recorded-music income benefited from the continued growth in streaming and subscriptions and more than offset the drop in revenue from physical formats. Publishing saw growth in the six-month period, while income from merchandising suffered a year-on-year decline. Sony also reported positive streaming results for SME in the first quarter of its 2018 financial year, although it was music publishing that registered the biggest sector rise for the company. Sony upped its revenue and operating income forecast for the current financial year for SME. However, the company is still forecasting a fall in both for the full year.

Record collections for UACRR despite ongoing collection society accreditation chaos
Ukrainian authors’ society UACRR has reported a big rise in royalty collections and distributions to its author and publisher members. Revenue from theaters, the society’s biggest income source, grew for the third consecutive year, but the biggest boost to overall growth came from live collections and TV receipts. Live collections benefited from tours from international artists, including Sting and Depeche Mode, while TV receipts benefited from the signing of a broadcast licensing agreement with the broadcast group 1+1 Media. The positive results from UACRR came despite little change to the country’s disorderly collective administrative system. The administration process was thrown into chaos in 2013 when a court order invalidated the accreditation system. Currently, there are 18 competing societies, many of which provide licenses for music use below market rates.

HDS ZAMP reports new record for collections and distributions
Croatian authors’ society HDS ZAMP has reported another record-breaking year for royalty collections and distributions, with both domestic and international receipts registering growth. A modest rise in costs meant the total cost-to-revenue ratio was down for the seventh consecutive year. With the exception of the events sector, all of the main public performance sectors saw higher collections. General licensing was the biggest source of revenue, ahead of TV. There was no repeat of the 2016 rise in phonomechanicals due to lower sales of physical formats in Croatia. However, higher private copying income meant the total for mechanicals was almost unchanged. Digital receipts remain low despite the rise in consumer uptake of music-streaming services.

Brazil country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed Brazil music industry report. Following two consecutive years of contraction, trade earnings from recorded music in Brazil grew sharply in 2017. Higher trade sales of digital formats and a rise in performance rights easily offset a more than halving of revenue from sales of physical formats. Umbrella rights organizations reported a second straight year of growth after a first fall for more than 10 years. Brazilian events promoter Time For Fun (T4F) reported a fall in revenue for its 2017 fiscal year. However, a higher occupancy rate per show in live music boosted revenue for the first quarter of this year.

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New issue of Music & Copyright with France country report

The latest issue of Music & Copyright is now available for subscribers to download. Here are some of the highlights.

It’s time for the music industry to tackle the gender imbalance
Gender equality is a hot topic at the moment. There’s pressure in the music industry to increase female participation in the performance, management, and technical sides of the business, with women severely underrepresented across the board. There are a growing number of initiatives – mostly from the public sector – to tackle the gender imbalance, but many music companies simply aren’t yet doing enough to promote women, leaving themselves open to criticism. There are signs that the situation is improving. Live Nation rolled out an initiative earlier this year to support early-stage female-led live music companies, and Smirnoff has attempted to increase the number of female artists headlining at its sponsored festivals.

AKM sees collection growth, but Austro Mechana records annual decline
Austrian authors’ society AKM is on an unbroken streak of collection growth that dates back more than 10 years. The collection society has reported an increase in all of its main domestic income sources. Moreover, overseas revenue was also up year on year. Although digital registered the highest growth rate for AKM, the revenue stream is still a minor revenue source for Austrian rights holders. AKM subsidiary Austro Mechana (AUME) also experienced a rise in digital income, on the back of rising consumer use of streaming services. However, retroactive private copying collection in the previous year had an impact on last year’s overall performance by AUME.

Audio and video streaming gains boost US and Canada music consumption
The recorded-music sectors in US and Canada are continuing to feel the benefit of rising consumer use of streaming services. Consumption figures for the first six months of this year for both countries show streaming gains have more than offset declines in the sales of physical and digital formats. Although sales of vinyl LPs were up year on year, the results for the six-month period confirm the ascendancy of streaming. Not only have access services put both markets firmly on a stable footing, the shift from ownership to access has had varying degrees of impact on the sales of the different genres. R&B/hip-hop has benefited most, and after overtaking rock last year to become the most popular genre in the US, R&B/hip-hop widened the gap further on the previous leader.

France country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed France music industry report. Recorded-music sales in France look to have turned the corner after several almost unbroken years of decline. Earlier this year, the local trade association SNEP reported a second straight year of growth for trade earnings. The rise marked only the third time in the last 10 years that trade sales have registered an uptick. Royalty receipts have been relatively stable. French authors’ society SACEM reported a third consecutive year of collection growth in 2017 after a slight year-on-year decline in 2014.

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New issue of Music & Copyright with Germany country report

The latest issue of Music & Copyright is now available for subscribers to download. Here are some of the highlights.

Instagram video gives music new social traction
In June, Facebook-owned Instagram upped its content game with the launch of its first long-form video service, IGTV. This new platform could be an opportunity for music creators. Artists have long used Instagram to document their lives and get closer to their fans. IGTV should enable them to boost fan engagement. Furthermore, long-form video gives Instagram a way to take on YouTube and in the music space. Artist should produce long-form video to post to IGTV as soon as possible to pick up views, as the platform is likely to become populated with a high level of content. Leading brands such as Nike, Gucci, and Netflix are already active in the new space.

Four years of record collections for Czech authors’ society OSA
Czech authors’ society OSA has reported a fourth consecutive year of growth for royalty collections. Moreover, the setting of a new record saw OSA maintain its position as a billion-koruna society. All the main sectors saw an increase last year, with digital income registering the highest growth rate. However, despite the jump in collections, digital remains a small source of income for Czech authors and publishers. Public performance held on to its position as the biggest collection source for OSA, having taken the top spot from broadcasting in 2016. A higher increase in costs than collections meant costs as a share of the total collected increased slightly. Total distributions to local authors were down last year, but payments to Czech publishers and overseas societies were up.

JASRAC reports slight dip in royalty collections and distributions
Japanese authors’ society JASRAC has reported a slight fall in royalty collections for the 12 months to end-March 2018, after a flat previous financial year. The big two domestic collection sources of general performance and broadcasting both registered growth. Background music was the only performance revenue source to suffer a year-on-year decline. Overall performance income increased, along with digital collections, but the ongoing decline in mechanical royalties caused by the steady fall in sales of physical soundcarriers more than offset the gains elsewhere. In line with the fall in collections, distributions to its members were down in the latest financial year, with broadcasting the biggest single source of earnings for Japanese authors, ahead of general licensing.

Germany country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed Germany music industry report. The steady rise in retail sales of recorded music in Germany ground to a halt last year after four straight years of growth. However, although Germany missed out on five straight years of rising sales, the prospects of a return to growth are positive because of the increasing consumer interest in music access services. One slight worry is the big fall last year in spending on physical formats. Although revenue from access services easily accounts for the biggest share of digital music income, CD albums remain the most popular format for German consumers, and should spending on CDs fall away at any speed then the market could suffer for another year or two. Authors’ society GEMA went one better than the recorded-music sector, recording five straight years of revenue growth with total collections last year topping €1bn ($1.2bn) for the second year running. Germany’s live music sector continues to deliver stable results. However, there have been some notable shifts within the market, largely following the entry of Live Nation at the beginning of 2016.

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New issue of Music & Copyright with Italy country report

The latest issue of Music & Copyright is now available for subscribers to download. Here are some of the highlights.

Funding vehicles offer opportunities to music companies
Although music industry revenue continues to increase on the back of rising streaming sales, the financial benefits aren’t spread evenly among record labels or artists, nor do they help those ailing segments of the live music sector. That’s why governments around the world support music businesses and musicians through funding programs. However, state funding is often in short supply, with music often in competition for finance with other creative endeavors. This means there are opportunities for private enterprises to step up to the plate to ensure a pipeline of talent and content necessary for commercial exploitation.

SiriusXM settles legal disputes with SoundExchange
SiriusXM and SoundExchange have settled their litigation surrounding outstanding claims from the beginning of 2007 to the end of 2017, in exchange for a lump sum payment of $150m. Both sides confirmed the settlement with SoundExchange, stating that the funds paid will be distributed to the rights owners and artists whose sound recordings were used during the settlement period. The agreement brings to an end almost five years of legal dispute centering on SoundExchange’s allegations that SiriusXM made incorrect deductions and exemptions when calculating its royalty payments. SiriusXM was also accused of failing to pay the correct fees due for a number of late payments within the same period. SoundExchange said the satellite radio service did not include in its gross revenue any performances of pre-1972 recordings, so reducing the gross revenue figure the royalty payments were based on.

ICMP accuses SGAE of operating a television broadcast distribution scam
Troubled Spanish authors’ society SGAE has been on the receiving end of fresh criticism from global music publishers’ association ICMP over an alleged inappropriate and unbalanced television broadcast distribution scam. Last year, SGAE’s offices were raided by local police that were investigating claims made by some of the authors’ society’s members who claimed that SGAE was complicit in the scam. ICMP complained that although SGAE was reprimanded by a WIPO arbitration panel, the international publishing community, and the international community of collective management organizations, the society has continued to manipulate television revenue. SGAE has denied ICMP’s accusations. Although the authors’ society acknowledged that some of its members had engaged in fraudulent conduct, SGAE said it was not party to its members’ wrongdoings.

Italy country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed Italy music industry report. Italy’s recorded-music sector has experienced an erratic few years. Despite the ongoing digital transition, overall performance has been most affected by sales of physical formats. A surprising jump in CD album sales a few years ago added almost as much revenue as streaming. The last couple of years, however, has seen physical sales fall and digital gains struggle to offset the decline. Moreover, the streaming boom came to an abrupt halt last year. UMG is the clear leader in market share terms, ahead of second-placed SME. Royalty collections have been positive with three years of growth following two years of decline. Italy’s live music sector has undergone a number of strategic changes of late, most notably with the launch of Ticketmaster Italia. Italian regulators have increased their attention on the secondary ticketing sector. Moreover, the government has introduced new regulations aimed at tackling the use of automated purchasing.

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New issue of Music & Copyright with Finland country report

The latest issue of Music & Copyright is now available for subscribers to download. Here are some of the highlights.

UMG and WMG make recorded-music market-share gains; Sony outperforms in publishing
Music & Copyright’s annual survey of the recorded-music and music-publishing sectors has revealed the changes in global market share for the three major music groups and the independent sector. Recorded-music leader UMG maintained the top spot, with an increase in both physical and digital market shares. Second-placed SME suffered a dip in its recorded-music share, while smaller major WMG continued its upward trend and registered a share increase. A repeat of 2016 saw independent record companies collectively account for the biggest share. Sony remained the leader in terms of corporate music publishing control, after registering the best year in the company’s history. UMPG suffered a slight fall in share, while Warner/Chappell and the collective share of the independent publishing sector were unchanged.

Return to growth for Dutch neighboring rights society SENA
SENA, the Dutch collection society representing performers and producers (record companies), has reported a rise in total licensing income for 2017. Domestic receipts increased for the third consecutive year and more than offset a second annual dip in international collections. Total domestic invoiced licensing revenue registered growth, but overseas invoiced revenue fell. In contrast, distributions in the Netherlands last year were down, while payments abroad were up. General licensing was the biggest collection source for SENA members, ahead of broadcasting. SENA noted in its annual report that the first full year of operation of its joint venture service center created with the authors’ society BUMA has brought the expected efficiency benefits. SENA also said that greater cooperation with BUMA on other joint initiatives is a possibility.

Regulation is just the ticket for live music events
Regulators around the world are starting to crack down on event ticket abuses. The key targets in many markets are the sharp practices of secondary ticketing operators, which have been the cause of much consumer complaint for some time. But also in regulatory sights is the widespread lack of price transparency and the use of automated bots to sweep up tickets for resale. And while the live music sector is welcoming of such regulation, there’s also an opportunity for private companies to deploy technological solutions to further help live music fans.

Finland country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed Finland music industry report. Finland is outside of the global top 20 for revenue from recorded music. But, despite its small size, the country is a market leader in the digital transition from ownership to access. Subscription services already account for more than two-thirds of recorded-music trade earnings in the country and this share is expected to rise further as the reliance on physical formats continues to drop and sales of downloads disappear. The streaming boom means digital trade sales now generate close to 90% of the total market. UMG enhanced its leading position last year with a modest rise in market share while SME took second place from WMG. Royalty earnings collected by authors’ society TEOSTO were down slightly year on year. However, continued growth in digital collections meant the revenue stream increased its share of total royalty receipts to 13.7%. Indications suggest Finland’s live sector registered a good year. Despite lower ticket sales to festivals, attendance at events increased year on year.

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New issue of Music & Copyright

The latest issue of Music & Copyright is now available for subscribers to download. Here are some of the highlights.

IFPI reports big rise in recorded-music trade sales
Global recorded-music trade earnings increased 8.1% last year, to $17.3bn, from $16.0bn in 2016, according to figures published by the IFPI. The rise marked the third consecutive year of growth since the IFPI began tracking the market in 1997. Revenue from digital formats and services increased 19.1%, to $9.4bn, from $7.9bn, while trade earnings from physical formats generated revenue of $5.2bn, down 5.4%, from $5.5bn. The rate of decline in physical format income was tempered by the ongoing revival of the vinyl format. Performance rights generated $2.4bn of revenue last year, up from $2.3bn in 2016, while synchronization earnings stood at $0.3bn.

Live streaming has a new champion in the making
Audiences have taken to watching live streams of performances at leading festivals and concert venues, with the likes of Ultra Music Festival, Coachella, and Live Nation among those embracing the format. To date, live-streaming efforts have been fairly piecemeal, and no single technology provider has emerged to own the space and push it forward. But this might be about to change, as ambitious provider LiveXLive continues to sign partnership deals with leading promoters. However, simple live streaming may not be enough to win over music fans in the long term; further innovation is needed to make it a highly engaging medium.

Three straight years of collection growth for SACEM
French collection society SACEM has reported a third successive year of growth in collections, with income and distributions both topping previous record levels. Domestic revenue and income from mandates all registered a year-on-year rise in 2017. Collections from broadcasting edged down, and mechanical receipts continued the downward trend, but royalty earnings from all the other main income sources registered growth. Moreover, in a repeat of both 2015 and 2016, private copying and online were the biggest gainers. In addition to the good year for collections, SACEM-member authors’ rights distributions also registered growth. The authors’ society noted that it restated its 2016 figures to reflect contractual changes with the mechanical rights society SDRM, which came into effect last year as part of a push to improve transparency in reporting.

Wolfgang’s Vault operators guilty of copyright infringement over streaming of iconic live recordings
A New York court has sided with some of the world’s biggest music publishers in a long running copyright infringement case involving the unlicensed download and streaming of a number of live performances by some of the world’s biggest artists. The service, Wolfgang’s Vault, has been buying up live audiovisual performances for several years and making them available on different websites. Although the service owners claimed to hold the correct mechanical licenses to distribute the recordings, the court decided otherwise and ruled that the service was guilty of copyright infringement. However, the court did not grant the publishers an injunction to shutter the websites. A future trial will determine if the copyright infringements were willful and set damages accordingly.

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New issue of Music & Copyright with China country report

The latest issue of Music & Copyright is now available for subscribers to download. Here are some of the highlights.

Spotify’s direct listing in New York sheds light on the company’s inner workings
After months of speculation, global on-demand audio streaming leader Spotify has finally filed all the necessary documentation with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) confirming its move to go public. The company will list on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in the next month or so under the symbol SPOT. Rather than go down the more common IPO route, Spotify decided on a direct listing and is not issuing new shares. Instead, existing shareholders will be free to sell their shares through brokerage transactions. As is the case with all listings, documents filed with the SEC lift the lid on previously unseen financial and operating metrics. This research note picks out some of the more interesting insights surrounding the financial standing of the service, its popularity, and what the details tell us about the wider music streaming market.

Musicautor celebrates 25th year with return to collections growth
Bulgarian authors’ society Musicautor has marked a quarter of a century of operations by recording a rise in collections. The three biggest sources of income – TV, radio, and general licensing – all registered growth last year, more than offsetting a drop in collections from retransmission, digital, and live concerts. In its business report, Musicautor noted difficulties associated with the administration of digital music rights and its inability to process reports from several of the major music services. Although the withdrawal of Anglo-American repertoire administration a few years ago by music publishers as part of their move to create pan-European licensing hubs hit digital collections, the lack of technical ability to process reports from the international digital platforms is a major challenge. General licensing revenue returned to growth after a decline the previous year, and mechanical collections grew sharply following the completion of a deal with the local producers’ association.

Brands get to grips with social change initiatives through live music
Brands have long supported live music events, but simply stumping up cash to sponsor a stage, festival tent, or bar has quickly became something of yesteryear with the onset of social media and more intimate B2C communications. However, racking up substantial online metrics only goes so far, and a number of brands are now looking to do good in the community and engage in social change initiatives through live music. This is a riskier strategy than simply hanging a banner over a stage, and brands need to make sure they choose their partners and social issues carefully.

China country report
In addition to the usual set of music industry statistics and news briefs, the latest issue of Music & Copyright includes a detailed China music industry report. China is the world’s most populous country, with close to 1.4 billion people. It is also home to the second-biggest economy. Last year saw the country’s economy grew 6.9%, the first time in seven years that annual growth has accelerated. The increase was also higher than the Chinese government’s forecast of 6.5%. In line with the optimism surrounding the economy, certain sections of China’s music industry are starting to show signs that it is living up to its long-held potential. In the past, there have been several false starts. More recently, though, glimmers of optimism look set to turn into real sales. The latest IFPI figures showed trade revenue registered healthy growth in 2016, after a big jump in earnings in the previous year. Aside from slight increases in minor digital formats, all the growth in the last few years has come from streaming. Ovum has estimated that growth continued last year, and more is set to come.

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