From the rise of catalog music to Europe’s new huge cash SPAC: It’s MBW’s Weekly Spherical-Up
Welcome to Music Business Worldwide’s weekly roundup – where we make sure you know the five biggest stories that made our headlines over the past seven days. The MBW roundup is backed by Centtrip, which helps over 500 of the world’s best-selling artists maximize their income and reduce their touring costs.
Is the popularity of new music dwindling? Or are we just experiencing a pandemic anomaly?
That’s the big question the MBW report leaves open this week, as we capture two key conclusions from a new half-yearly report from MRC Data from the US.
The first of these conclusions shows that “catalog” music claimed over 66% of the streaming-plus-sale record market in the US in the first half of this year – a significant jump in market share compared to the same period in 2020. “Current” Music meanwhile conquered barely a third (33.6%) of the market. (Important caveat: ‘catalog’ in this context describes music that was released 18 months before the moment it was played or purchased, so we don’t know how much of that 66% is based on the popularity of golden oldies and how much it’s newer hits.)
Our second key conclusion from the MRC Data report concerns the “streaming megahit”. The MBW analysis shows that the cumulative popularity of the top 10 largest on-demand audio streaming data sets in the first half of 2021 was significantly lower than the corresponding figures in the first half of 2020, the first half of 2019 and the first half of 2018.
Nevertheless, the overall streaming volume increased significantly. Conclusion: America has more streams than last year, but fewer of them go to the biggest hits.
Elsewhere this week, MBW released news that an upcoming report from a bipartisan UK parliamentary inquiry into the economics of music streaming would include some key recommendations to the UK government that major music companies are unlikely to be fans of.
These proposals, obtained through MBW sources and later confirmed in the published document, concern the granting of the right to merit of artists from “fair remuneration” and the referral of the so-called “dominance” of the majors to the UK Competition and Markets Authority ( CMA).
Meanwhile, I2PO, a new business-to-business company that aims to list on Euronext Paris next week, has successfully raised $ 325 million and has shown interest in exploring potential partnerships in the music industry. One to watch out for.
Elsewhere, Round Hill’s listed UK fund just raised $ 86.5 million through a new equity issue, well above its $ 50 million minimum target.
Here are the biggest stories from MBW over the past five days …
1) Over 66% of all songs heard in the United States are now catalog records rather than new releases
In the first six months of 2021, 555.3 billion music streams were streamed on audio and video platforms in the US – 54.3 billion more than in the previous year.
But the bigger story for the US music industry is less about how much people have heard, and more about what they have heard.
According to MRC Data’s new semi-annual report, catalog music’s share of total album consumption in the US rose to 66.4% in the six months to the end of June 2021 (with “catalog” reflecting all releases made more than 18 months prior to a consumer purchase published and / or press play) …
2) WILL WE FIND THE DEATH OF THE STREAMING MEGAHIT?
For decades, the record industry has focused its attention and investment on one thing above all else: the hit record.
However, new numbers from the US this week suggest that hits – as in blockbusters, industry-dominant megahits – are increasingly becoming a less-spotted beast.
Although millions more people play music via streaming services every year, the biggest streaming hit in the industry in mid-2021 is significantly smaller than the biggest streaming hit in mid-2020, 2019 and 2018 …
3) IMPORTANT RECORD COMPANIES PAMMED BY BRITISH POLITICIANS ‘STREAMING INQUIRY REPORT
In January, MBW watched a number of British politicians take turns challenging (and verbally abusing) the heads of the biggest record companies in the market live on camera.
They did so on behalf of a bipartisan British parliamentary inquiry into the economics of music streaming.
According to MBW sources, the report published by the Committee on Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) on this investigation contains two special recommendations (later confirmed in the published document) to the UK government that large record companies must leave inconveniently …
4) A NEW SPAC HAS TO SPEND US $ 325 MILLION – AND HAS ITS EYE ON THE MUSIC INDUSTRY
In the music industry, no acronym has been spoken of more than ‘SPAC’ this year.
There are special acquisition firms everywhere that are spending huge sums of money, from longtime Geffen Records President Neil Jacobson’s $ 200 million IPO in New York, to Anghami and Reservoir’s respective NASDAQ plans, to SPAC mergers, to buying 10 % of Bill Ackman’s finance company Universal musical group.
Now, a new SPAC, available in Europe at over $ 300 million, could be another turning point for the music industry …
5) OTHER GOOD NEWS FOR THE VALUE OF MUSIC, ROUND HILL RECEIVES $ 86.5M IN STOCK ISSUE – WELL OVERWRITES TARGET
Round Hill’s listed UK fund raised $ 86.5 million through a new stock placement – well above its minimum target of $ 50 million.
The news is further evidence of the positive investor sentiment around music rights today and follows that the Hipgnosis Songs Fund also exceeded its minimum target for a stock issue earlier this month. (Hipgnosis went for $ 210 million but ended up at $ 215 million due to an oversubscribed round.)
Round Hill’s new stock offering will place 86.5 million C-shares in Round Hill Music Royalty Fund Limited (RHM) at a price of $ 1.00 per share …
MBW’s weekly roundup is powered by Centtrip, which helps over 500 of the world’s best-selling artists maximize their income and reduce their touring costs.Music business worldwide