Spain Sees Recorded Music Revenues Rise for Third Year Running on Strength of Streaming Market

Christopher Polk/Getty Images for Clear Channel
Enrique Iglesias performs at Staples Center on Dec. 6, 2013 in Los Angeles.

Enrique Iglesias’ “Duele el Corazón,” featuring Wisin, was the most streamed song in Spain between January and June 2016.

The growing popularity of streaming in has led to an increase in recorded music sales in Spain for the third year in a row, trade body Promusicae announced today. In the first half of 2016, sales were up 4.1 percent over the same period in 2015. Two-thirds of the 73.5 million euros earned came from digital music, notably from premium streaming subscriptions.

The growth is slight, but still significant in a country where the music industry experienced continuous losses from 2001 to 2013, and where illegal downloads accounted for almost 88% percent of all digital content consumed in 2015, according to Spain's Coalition Against Piracy. In a 2014 survey, 70 percent of Internet users said they “would not pay for something that they can get for free.” 

Ad-supported streaming, however, Promusicae points out "is not correlated to an increase in revenues for musicians, composers and producers."

Revenues from streaming subscriptions have, quickly surpassed the receding download and once-promising mobile product markets in the country; €40.1 million of €46.7 million in digital sales came from streaming, with only €5.5 million euros generated by tracks or albums downloads. Once-promising mobile products accounted for as little as €1 million. As everywhere else, physical sales were down 17.5 percent year-over-year, with CDs and vinyl bringing in €26.8 million over the first half of the year.