'There is a natural overlap': Electronic music biz urged to build on video games success

'There is a natural overlap': Electronic music biz urged to build on video games success

The author of the IMS Business Report has told Music Week the popularity of the video games business represents a "huge" opportunity for electronic music.

Earlier this year, 10 million fans watched a virtual concert by Marshmello inside video game Fortnite, while Dixon featured as a resident DJ in GTA: After Hours and Deadmau5 created branded gaming chairs.

"The gaming industry is 7x the size of whole music industry, so there's a lot to go after," said Kevin Watson (pictured delivering the 2019 edition of his annual report at last month's International Music Summit (IMS) conference in Ibiza).

"There's a natural overlap in target market between electronic music fans and gaming fans," he added. "We've seen Fornite get Marshmello in and 10 million players turned up, we've seen Grand Theft Auto put people like Dixon and Black Madonna in the game and we're seeing other people now start to cross over.

"There are huge opportunities not just with branding, but also in terms of engaging either existing music fans or new fans through the gaming medium."

There are still massively untapped parts of the world and forms of value

Kevin Watson

The value of the electronic music business dipped 1% to $7.2 billion (£5.7bn) in 2018/19, according to the 2019 report.

"It wasn't a massive surprise and it's to be expected given the industry's been through such growth for the last four or five years," said Watson. "You'd expect that to slow down at some point and have to consolidate.

"There are definitely possibilities of reaching a new ceiling. There are still massively untapped parts of the world and forms of value. And there are parts of the world, if you look at Latin America and Asia, where the popularity and penetration of electronic music is still lower than elsewhere. That's a huge opportunity to grow."

Watson said he felt positive about the overall state of the industry, pointing out that an IFPI survey ranked dance as the world's third popular genre with an estimated 1.5 billion listeners.

"There are some good opportunities and some big challenges and what's interesting is that people are facing up to them now. We talk about data, mental health and gender diversity, all of those subjects are now very much on the agenda. People are putting some serious time and effort into focusing on them and that can only be a good thing." 

subscribe link free-trial link

follow us...