BMG is speeding up payments to more than 20,000 US and UK songwriters on old contracts.
It means that the songwriters will be paid within 60 days of the close of a royalty period rather than the 90 days specified in their contracts. Distributions will now occur one month earlier than previously on February 28 and August 31 of each year.
The majority of BMG’s publishing clients, mainly those on newer contracts, are already on 60-day terms. This change extends the benefit to most of the remaining clients, mainly those who signed contracts subsequently acquired by BMG with companies including Chrysalis and Cherry Lane.
The move is part of BMG’s programne to ensure established clients are not left behind by changes in the industry. The company has sought to modernise industry practices, including abandoning packaging deductions on digital formats (a change which benefits artists) and unilaterally removing the controversial controlled composition deduction (benefiting songwriters).
Sebastian Hentzschel (pictured), BMG CIO, who is responsible for BMG’s global royalty processing, said: “With 60-day terms the new standard in music publishing, we are delighted to extend them to our acquired catalogues. This service update reaffirms BMG’s commitment to deliver 21st century levels of fairness, transparency and service to songwriters and artists whenever they signed their deals.”
This service update reaffirms BMG’s commitment to deliver 21st century levels of fairness, transparency and service to songwriters and artists whenever they signed their deals
The move was driven by Eric Scott, SVP rights administration & royalty services US and Aidan Kenny, SVP royalty services & income tracking UK.
Royalty statements are delivered through the myBMG platform, a single all-inclusive portal for both songwriters and artists. The portal offers real-time insights and open period data, including publishing royalty analysis by territory, song, source and income type; and recording royalty analysis by territory, product and distribution channel.
Hartwig Masuch, BMG CEO, said: “Contracts define minimum terms in the relationship between music companies and their clients, but too often they become frozen in time, creating generations of disadvantaged musicians. Paying our clients faster forms part of our broader program to make the music industry work better for artists and songwriters.”