UK record labels annual trade income hits £1.1bn in 2019

UK record labels annual trade income hits £1.1bn in 2019

The trade income of the UK's record labels has reached its highest level for more than 10 years.

According to the BPI, trade income rose by 7.3% in 2019, reaching £1,069.8 million, thanks to investment in new music, the growth of streaming and vinyl sales.

Trade income covers revenues generated through streaming, physical and download sales, public performance rights, and sync.

“Watching British artists such as Stormzy, Celeste, Dave and Harry Styles at the BRIT Awards was a reminder of the fantastic contribution music makes to our national life. The music industry’s success is powered by record labels’ up-front investment and shouldering of risk, so it is important to the sustainable health of the music ecosystem that label revenues grew on last year’s results," said BPI & BRIT Awards chief executive Geoff Taylor of the latest results.

“But there is no room to rest on our laurels. British music faces intense competition at home and abroad, is undervalued by some tech platforms and is undermined by widespread illegal sites. In fact, total revenues remain more than a fifth below the post-Millennium peak recorded in 2001. It is time for a new partnership with Government to unleash the full potential of our music industry to benefit our culture and our economy.”

The BPI though stressed that A&R investment in new music accounted for around a quarter (22-24%) of industry revenues from sales and streams, while the 2019 rise marks fourth consecutive year of growth, with streaming incoming leaping by 21.8% to over £628.9 million, and is the highest level of trade since 2006, when the combined total was £1,166.2m.

The BPI's Taylor recently welcomed Covid-19 relief from the government for small venues and new measures in the budget addressing music education and copyright.

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