The global value of music copyright leaped up by 14% in 2022, over $5 billion in monetary gains showing powerful growth for the industry.

A newly published analysis reveals how well the global music industry is doing. The value of music around the globe has seen incredible growth last year and looks to continue growing. Who’s gaining from that value?

Well, the report revealed that the global value of music copyright is up 14% to $41.5 billion. This massive gain is made up of $26 billion in recorded music revenues, $11.4 million of collecting society revenues, and $4.1 million of direct publishing revenues.

The data has been collated by former Spotify chief economist Will Page. Page has combined data from the IFPI’s Global Music Report, CISAC’s Global Collections Report, and Music and Copyright’s estimates for music publishing. Page factored duplicate revenues into his calculations.

The report shows continuous growth for the music industry. Page wrote: “As with prior years, I will begin by saying ‘this year we’ve got a really big number to report’ – and this year, for the first time ever, that number starts with a four.”

Does growth benefit artists or labels?

Are the artists benefiting from all this cash flow? Well, yes but not entirely. Page notes: “The spoils of growth are shared evenly between labels and artists on one side, and songwriters publishers, and their CMOs on the other – both adding around $2.5 billion each.”

In the new digital age of music powered by streaming, the power dynamics have shifted away from major labels. This hasn’t just provided artists more power over their music, it also represents a better proportion of revenues.

In the past, record deals may have left the artist with as little as 10% of revenues. Whereas now, there are independent solutions for global reach thanks to the prominence of digital platforms. RouteNote for example allows artists to upload music for free, keeping 85% of their revenues. For a small upfront fee, artists can ensure 100% of their music earnings go to themselves. All whilst retaining full control.

Page’s report does show that dynamics are changing. He writes: “The labels’ digital income growth shows signs of slowing down, especially in western markets. Yet, in what feels like an episode of ‘tales of the unexpected’, this slowdown is being offset by the resurgence in adjusted physical income which has exploded by over $1 billion since 2020, thanks to accelerating demand for CDs in Asia and insatiable need for the ‘platters that matter’ in Europe and America.”

Rights collection societies 2022 success

CISAC had already reported massive growth of 28% in 2022 for society collections. It was hard to say at the time whether that was simply an effect of the returning live music industry after COVID. Page however suggests that it’s not simply an outcome of a post-COVID boost.

Page writes: “Live music today is far bigger than it was pre-pandemic, albeit lopsided in favour of stadiums and festivals.” In addition, high inflation at the moment is having an effect. Collection is also catching up with the industry which changed so quickly to become dominated by digital, with smarter systems capturing lost royalties.

View Will Page’s full report and analysis here.