Increase in royalty payouts to artists


Songwriters are receiving more royalties than ever

Encouraging new figures from PRS For Music show that more artists were being paid for their music during record-breaking year

PRS For Music has revealed that songwriters, composers and music publishers received more royalties than ever before during 2016. This means 33% more music creators were paid for their work. The total figure for the year reached £527.6m, while its own revenue for 2016 rose 10.1% year-on-year to £621.5m.

PRS For Music is an amalgamation of the Mechanical-Copyright Protection Society and the Performing Right Society. Its job is to collect royalties for its 118,000 members. So every time a song is played in public it earns royalties, which is paid to the writer/artist. The company made payments to 4.2m works, which is an increase of 45% on 2015.

Revenue from music played via online services rose 89.9% to £80.5m. While streaming services made a total of £61.5m, an increase of 159.5%. The figures show more people are using streaming and online services to consume music, as revenue from downloads dropped 9.8%. Europe and the US continue to lead the way in royalty payments, paying £137.4m.

Perhaps the most interesting reading comes from the live sector figures. While payments from pubs, clubs and shops continue to decline, revenues from hotels, restaurants and cinemas were up.

PRS For Music chief executive Robert Ashcroft said: “We cautiously welcome the idea that the business has turned a corner. We’ve seen strong growth in streaming services and everybody knows that the recorded music part of the business has started to grow again, which is very encouraging.”

The business is expected to see further growth in 2017, so next year could see more records being broken.

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