Music Rights group BMI distributed $749.8 million (£463.81m) in royalties to songwriters in the 12 months to end of June 2012.
The company has reported $898.8 million (£555.98m) in revenues for the fiscal year, 3% down on FY 2011. It blamed the drop - the first in two decades - on a new agreement that settles a rate litigation with the Radio Music Licensing Committee (RMLC) – the association that represents the vast majority of US radio stations.
Excluding the financial impact of the radio settlement, BMI said its revenues would have been up by more than 4%.
A total of 40 billion performances from BMI’s catalog of 7.5 million musical works were processed during FY2012. BMI distributed payments on the largest number of individual musical works in its history in the period.
BMI serves more than 650,000 licensed businesses and 550,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers.
The short term impact of the settlement lowers BMI licensing fees for radio for 2010 through 2012 with an opportunity to rebound as the radio industry resumes revenue growth.
“BMI has weathered the economic storm remarkably well considering the negative conditions that have impacted many of our revenue sources,” said BMI President and CEO Del Bryant.
“Our distributions to music publishers and songwriters have remained predictable and reliable. Even with the retroactive radio settlement and a challenging financial landscape, we have still been able to return nearly 84 cents of every dollar we have generated back to our publishers and songwriters.
“Our performance in fiscal year 2012 under these difficult conditions is a testament to our prudent fiscal management and to our resolve to responsibly manage the copyrights and income entrusted to us by our publishers and songwriters."
The impact on total revenues from the radio settlement was significantly blunted by revenue increases in international, general licensing, cable networks and digital media. For the first time, international revenues, which reflect the popularity of the BMI repertoire around the globe, accounted for more than a third of BMI’s total revenue, totaling $302 million, up 12% from the prior year.
General Licensing revenue from physical establishments such as restaurants and nightclubs saw an 8% increase to a new high of $108 million.
New media and digital revenue reached an all-time high of $35 million, representing an increase of 27% over fiscal year 2011 and generating 6% of domestic revenue primarily due to the rise in music use by BMI’s 10,000 digital licensees.