Business News Digital Labels & Publishers

GEMA releases 2014 stats, hits out at digital split

By | Published on Friday 10 April 2015


The German music publishing sector’s collecting society GEMA has put out some figures for the monies it processed in 2014, which topped 893.6 million euros, up 4.8% on 2013. This included 340.6 million euros from public performance, 287.3 million from broadcast, 109 million from mechanicals and 44.8 million from streaming services and such like.

But with the publishing sector getting increasingly vocal about the split of digital revenues between respective stakeholders, and GEMA already famous for it’s tetchiness on all things digital, what we really want here is an angry quote. So hurrah for Rolf Budde, boss of the German publishing sector’s trade body DMV and a member of the GEMA advisory board.

Discussing the fact that the labels take a much bigger cut of streaming income than the publishers, Budde told Billboard: “Publishers are decidedly uncomfortable with the fact that the holders of master rights are receiving more than fifteen times the amount that authors and music publishers are given”.

Labels, while definitely taking the lion’s share of streaming income, would likely disagree with Budde’s maths there. But whatever the specifics, many in the publishing sector and songwriting community would agree with his claim that “the massive imbalance between the payouts which Spotify and its peers issue to labels on the one hand, and to authors and publishers on the other, is horrific”.

He concluded: “Considering that, following a slump in CD sales, the download market, which has so far been relatively stable, is now also sagging, it is even more important for this disparity to be addressed. To this end, we will be taking the necessary action”.