Digital music revenues matched physical sales for the first time in 2014 due to strong growth in the streaming market
According to the newly released edition of IFPI’s (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry) annual Digital Music Report, the digital market rose 6.9% to $6.9 billion representing 46% of all global music sales. CDs, vinyl and other physical formats also accounted for 46% of the market, with rights for performances, films and advertisements making up the rest.
We need a world where copyright is respected and music is valued – where artists, songwriters and record producers are fairly compensated when their music is played. Where investment in new artists can increase once again, bringing greater choice to music fans everywhere. This is a future for music that I believe is worth fighting for.”
-PlÁcido domingo, IFPI Chairman
Overall revenue slipped by 0.4%. Pharrell Williams‘s “Happy” was the most-downloaded single globally in 2014, with Taylor Swift reported as the most popular artist by the IFPI. The global recorded music industry was worth $14.97 billion last year, down from $15 billion in 2013 making it the second consecutive year of falling music sales. In 2012 global revenues rose only 0.3%.
Download sales declined in virtually all established markets, but continue to grow in some emerging markets due to the rise in use of Android smartphones and tablets orientating to streaming services rather than downloads. This has combined with a certain amount of substitution as consumers move from download to streaming services. Downloads still account for the bulk of global digital revenues (52%), but declined by 8.0% in 2014.
This increase in digi sales is good news for the emerging artists entering into a digital music industry, and a huge change of pace for the vets. It’s only a matter of time before the music evolution turns completely digital, so just get ready.