Uh oh. Immediately after a run of good news for the recorded music market of late comes a reminder nowadays (March 21) that this company can nonetheless provide some troubling figures now and once again.

In this case, it is the trade revenues (ie. wholesale money going to labels and artists) of the UK recorded music market for 2018, which have just been announced by regional trade physique the BPI.

The headline stat: total revenues delivered to record labels and artists across all formats in the industry grew by just three.1% in the year, up from £839.5m to £865.5m. That represented a considerable slowdown from the 10.six% rise noticed in the prior 12 months.

And to make matters worse: according to the Bank Of England, annual inflation stood at three.three% in 2018.

This suggests that, with inflation factored in, that £839.5m in 2017 trade income was really worth the equivalent of £867.5m in 2018 – ie. much more than the £865.5m generated by the company final year.



There are some mitigating variables right here.

For a single factor, 2017 saw the record-breaking release of Ed Sheeran’s Divide album, amongst other hugely thriving records, which resulted in a hard industry comparison for 2018 to reside up to.

In addition, 2018 was a considerable year in terms of the industry’s transition away from physical purchases. According to the BPI’s stats, taken from its new 2018 ‘All About The Music’ Yearbook, wholesale CD sales final year fell by a painful 28.four%, down to £176.8m. And total physical revenues fell by 22.five% to £240.7m.

It was an even worse year for the humble download: digital tracks dropped 27.1% year-on-year to just £36.9m, whilst digital album downloads tumbled 28.six% to £44.3m.



The largest vibrant spot was, unsurprisingly, streaming.

Subscription streaming revenues leapt up 34.9% to £467.6m, producing up more than half (54%) of total trade revenues.

Ad-supported audio streaming revenues, meanwhile, grew 25.eight% to £19.1m.

Revenues paid out by video streaming solutions grew by 9.9% to just £29.7m – which was significantly less than each the money paid to labels from sales of vinyl (£57.1m) and digital track downloads (£36.9m).

An evolutionary year for the UK, then, with the drop-off in physical and digital music sales dampening the positivity surrounding development in subscription streaming.

Some specialists now predict that streaming development in Europe (such as the UK) and the United States is going to start off to slow in 2019. Query is: what will that imply for the state of the British industry all round?

Specific meals for believed for UK labels: their colleagues more than in the USA enjoyed a 11.9% rise in wholesale recorded music market revenues in 2018.

The soundtrack to The Greatest Showman (pictured) was the year’s most effective-promoting album in the UK (and about the planet).Music Company Worldwide