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Weekly roundups
March 19, 2021

How much value is in Music? WR #59

Since this week should have been the time to fly out to Austin for a new edition of SXSW, I thought this Weekly Roundup would be a good occasion to rethink our take on the value of music. We’ve seen many numbers come out this week on the music industry’s growth over 2020, with an obvious accent on digital streams of revenue. Which keeps us wondering: how on earth are going to define the value of music if the digital side of things is staying on?

#1. Music industry’s revenues in 2020

Let’s start with the global view: the recorded music industry has seen a real negative impact during last year. Overall, a slight increase can be noticed, but we are nowhere near the level of 11% in 2019, with an increase of $1.5 billion. Although, the last quarter saw a hopeful rise, which could be creating a momentum for the beginning of 2021. All numbers, as always, are available here, by MIDiA Research.

One interesting trend that keeps on growing is the independent part in the industry. As we talked about earlier, independent artists and record labels have been a major part of music streaming growth (still guaranteeing some diversity, as data show). But mostly, independent artists keep creating and distributing more and more content, outperforming the majority of the market, clearing a nice path for creator tools solutions, but also for distribution tools.

And since this week in France was the release of the recorded music market numbers, let’s just take a look (as you might already know, Reprtoir is based in the South of France). And of course, the growth is not ideal, but on the bright side, music streaming saw an increase in revenue year over year of around 20%, accounting for 69% of the global annual growth. Another argument for the fact that the majority of rights management will come from a fully digital environment!

#2. Spotify is testing a revenue increase

Speaking of music streaming revenues, Spotify started a new pricing in the UK. Because the market is reaching maturity, the number of new monthly active users is not growing as much as before. So to keep the revenues up, several leads have been talked about, including ads for podcasts, even for Premium users. More interestingly, the service is questioning users on the different pricing they could be setting up. Let’s keep a close look on these possibilities.

#3. How does Hipgnosis value songs?

Going a bit further, capitalizing on tracks is not only a question solely related to streaming. It had been a while since we talked about Hipgnosis (yes, around 2 weeks). The company is starting to unveil their methods to their stakeholders; how they will measure success and the revenues generated by different tracks, how to calculate assets pricing… All details are here.

It is getting interesting to see how music content and creation is attracting attention and investments. Hipgnosis is now the leading investment fund in the field and will be watched closely.

#4. NFTs keep making their way into music

You weren’t expecting an article on music’s value without a focus on NFTs right? The rise of these tokens on the blockchain is impressive: Grimes sold $6 million worth of digital art, Aphex Twin sold his NFT Artwork for $128,000. We’re now witnessing even some kind of “museums” online, requiring a token to access a portfolio. Art value is being revisited, virtual assets are becoming a valuable track for music.

And the blockchain world is embracing the music industry, as we can see for Crypto.com hiring a music industry veteran Joe Conyers, to manage the NFT marketplace. In general, a wide investment mania is taking over several fields including Music. The New York Times dived into the details here, if you want to get more details.

#5. Reprtoir is in Music Business Worldwide

To wrap up our Weekly Roundup, we are glad to share our take on the music industry professionals’ work methods. Check out our founder’s take on record labels and publishers’s tools, and how we’re working to help them!

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