Streaming sales rise 49% to drive UK music industry

Music streaming services saw revenues grow 49% to £251m last year, as a new report suggests the UK music industry has several reasons to be cheerful.
The data appears in Measuring Music 2016, an annual study from UK Music examining the scale of the industry and changes in employment and consumer behaviour. The rapid rate of growth led UK Music to call streaming “key to the continued growth of the industry.”

But culture secretary Karen Bradley said the changing shape of music consumption posed difficult questions for streaming providers, like YouTube.

“For the potential of streaming to be fully realised, it must operate fairly and value the music that creates business and traffic for the service,” said Bradley.

“The debate on fair remuneration for rights holders from digital services like YouTube and from all user-uploaded content has never been more important if our future digital market is to continue to grow and prosper.  Sustainability and stability are critical for future growth.”

As streaming has exploded, sales of digital albums have fallen, and were down 12.5% last year to £175m. But physical sales, which have been declining steadily for years, fell less than 0.5% to £512m, thanks to the continued resurgence in vinyl.