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ANOTHER YEAR OF GROWTH IN THE U.K.

U.K. record company trade income reached £865.5m in 2018, a rise of 3.1% thanks to continued, albeit slowed, growth in streaming. (That’s about $1.135b). The rise is a fraction of the growth achieved in the two years prior due in part to a large dip in physical revenues. 

The stats come from British trade body BPI’s annual yearbook, All About The Music 2019, which trumpets the fact that industry revenues in the U.K. have risen by 21.8% over the last three years of consecutive growth. From 2015–2016, stats were up 6.8% and from 2016—2017 income rose 10.6%. 

Last year, income from streaming represented 59.6% of the pie (£516.4m), rising 32.8% on 2017. Subscription streaming counted for 54% of that (£467.6m), rising 34.9% from 2017, while ad-supported rose to a 2.2% share (£19.1m). Video was up 9.9% to account for 3.4% (£29.7m).

The physical market dipped 22.5% in 2018 to account for 27.8% of the market. CDs that took the hit—down 28.4% to a 20.4% share (£176.8m)—while vinyl rose 3.7% to 6.6% (£57.1m). That’s the largest decrease to have hit the physical market by far over the last three years; in 2015/2016 physical was down 0.4% and in 2016/2017 the sector actually rose by 2.4%. 

Downloads were also down last year by 27.9%—a similar rate of decrease seen in the two years prior—to take 9.4% of the market (£81.5m). 

The stats aren’t surprising when considering that so few British acts made an impact both at home and globally in 2018, as well as the fact that high street retailer HMV fell into administration in December. Will the story look rosy again by year-end? 

 

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