CMU Digest

CMU Digest 19.09.16: Pandora, copyright directive, Measuring Music, Tidal, Crowdmix, T In The Park

By | Published on Monday 19 September 2016


The key stories from the last seven days in the music business…

Pandora announced it had secured direct deals with Universal Music, Sony Music and (two days later) Warner Music, plus Merlin and a range of indie distributors.Although focused on the US (so not about global expansion), the deals should allow Pandora to launch its fully on-demand streaming service, which isn’t covered by the American compulsory licence it traditionally utilised for its existing personalised radio set-up. Meanwhile, Pandora re-launched the paid-for version of the latter service, introducing more skips and offline listening, showing ambitions to sign up more people to that $5 a month service as well as the in-development $10 a month fully on-demand service. [READ MORE]

The European Commission published a draft new copyright directive following its wide-ranging review of copyright matters as part of the Digital Single Market initiative. For the music industry there were two sections of interest. The first deals with the responsibilities of user-upload platforms like YouTube, potentially limiting the range of the safe harbour that protects such services from liability when their users upload content without the copyright owner’s permission. The second deals with artist rights to fair remuneration and transparency in the digital music domain. [READ MORE]

UK Music published its latest Measuring Music report, reckoning that the music industry contributed £4.1 billion to the UK economy last year. The so called ‘gross value added’ by the music industry was only slightly up on 2014, but 11% up since UK Music first started producing its annual stats report back in 2012. Live music has played a key role in that growth over the last few years, though in 2015 its GVA slipped slightly. Meanwhile UK Music noted that exports accounted for over half of the wider sector’s GVA, meaning the Brexit negotiations will be important to music companies. [READ MORE]

Tidal’s losses doubles last year following Jay-Z’s acquisition of the streaming firm, according to the latest financial filing by its parent company Aspiro AB in Sweden. Losses went up from $10.4 million in 2014 to $28 million in 2015, while revenues rose 30% from $36.2 million to $47 million. A big part of the firm’s expenditure remains the royalties paid to the music companies, which remain particularly high because of the minimum guarantees and advances streaming services commit to pay labels and publishers. [READ MORE]

Music-based social media app Crowdmix was spending £2 million a month earlier this year ahead of its collapse, an administrator’s report revealed. The company went into administration in July having only ever launched its app in beta. Key backer and money lender Nick Candy subsequently bought the company with hopes to resurrect its product. The administrator’s report also revealed how ‘Eastenders’ actor Pasty Palmer was involved in a last ditch attempt to save the company, she asked to rally celebrity friends to invest in the doomed venture. [READ MORE]

The boss of T In The Park revealed that additional licensing restrictions that resulted from osprey nesting on the festival’s new site resulted in an extra £1 million in costs for the event. Geoff Ellis of Live Nation controlled DF Concerts was commenting after the company’s latest financial filing showed that profits slipped in 2015, mainly because of costs associated with the somewhat controversial move of T In The Park to the new site on the estate of Strathallan Castle. [READ MORE]

The big deals from the last seven days in the music business…
• Music rights firm Ole confirmed it had secured a $500 million credit facility [INFO]
• Universal Music Publishing and Grand Hustle Publishing signed Travis Scott [INFO]
• Bucks Music signed Troy Miller [INFO]
• ASCAP confirmed it had re-signed Paul McCartney [INFO]
• Sony/ATV confirmed it had re-signed Taylor Swift [INFO]

READ MORE ABOUT: | | | | |