The IFPI has revealed that the global value of the recorded music industry grew for the first time since 1999 last year, with digital formats now representing 34% of the total market. The international trade body’s new ‘Digital Music Report’ states that the industry grew by 0.3% in 2012 with digital revenues reaching $5.6bn, a 9% increase year on year.
IFPI CEO Frances Moore said in the report: “This year’s Digital Music Report reflects the growing optimism felt across the music business internationally. We are on the path to recovery and driving the digital economy. These are hard-won achievements – we will be pushing to build on them in 2013.”
Illustrating the leap that digital has made in so-called ‘emerging markets’, major international digital services are now present in more than 100 countries as opposed to the 23 recorded at the beginning of 2011.
Tired of figures yet? No? Good, because the report is packing some more serious stats. Digital music sales increased 12% in 2012 to 4.3 billion units globally with 207 million digital album sales and digital taking the majority of income in the US, India, Norway and Sweden. Top global sellers included Adele (surprise surprise), Taylor Swift, One Direction and Lana Del Ray.
The reports also states that 62% of internet users now use licensed services to consume music, there are 20 million paying subscribers to music services (an increase of 44%) and also that download unit sales are up by 12%. The report also addresses “barriers to growth” including piracy and the role that ISPs and search engines have to play in protecting copyright. The RIAA recently released a report concluding that Google’s policy has had “no demonstrable impact” on the issue, a view also expressed by the BPI towards the end of last year.
So, basically all of those boring arguments about the death throes of the industry can now stop as digital rises across the globe. That’s the bottom line of the report but if you want to read the entire thing, go here.