Value of U.K. Music Industry Grows to £3.8 Billion

Sam Smith performs on the BBC Radio 1 stage at T in The Park
Ollie Millington/WireImage

Sam Smith performs on the BBC Radio 1 stage at T in The Park on July 13, 2014 in Kinross, Scotland.

The total economic value of the U.K. music industry in 2013 grew 9 percent year-on-year to £3.8 billion ($6.2 billion), up from £3.5 billion ($5.7 billion) the previous year, according to a comprehensive new report published by umbrella trade organization UK Music.

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The annual survey, titled "Measuring Music," provides a detailed breakdown of the gross economic contribution that the core facets of the U.K. music business, including music sales, publishing, concerts, recording studios, collecting societies, managers and music trade bodies, made to the British economy in 2013.

Key takeaways from this year's annual report -- the second that UK Music has produced -- include a rise in revenues generated by musicians, singers, composers, songwriters and lyricists, totaling £1.7 billion ($2.8 billion), up from £1.6 billion ($2.6 billion) in 2012.

Live music sales in the United Kingdom also climbed year-on-year, totaling £789 million ($1.3 billion), compared to £662 million ($1.1 billion) the previous year. Music publishing income additionally rose to £436 million ($709 million), while revenues generated by music producers, recording studios and staff in 2013 totaled £102 million ($166 million), up from £80 million ($130 million).

However, income from recorded music sales fell from £634 million ($1.03 billion) to £618 million ($1.01 billion).

Music representatives, comprising collecting societies, managers and trade bodies generated £80 million ($130 million) in annual revenues.

The total value of U.K. music exports was placed at £2.2 billion ($3.6 billion) -- up from $1.4 billion ($2.3 billion) the previous year -- with musicians, composers, songwriters and lyricists the most profitable sector in the overseas market, accounting for £814 million ($1.3 billion) in export sales. The report also detailed that the British music industry employs more than 111,000 people on a full-time basis with 67,900 professional musicians working in the U.K.

"We all know how amazing British music is. Now we can put a figure to its value," said UK Music CEO Jo Dipple in a statement. "We lead the world in song writing, composing, production, recordings and live performances… Measuring Music provides us with the data to accurately show Government and policy makers how important an industry we are to the U.K. economy."

While the "Measuring Music" survey suggests that almost all facets of the U.K. music industry have substantially grown year-on-year, the report does contain the important proviso that there was a "significant increase" in the number of survey responses, coupled with greater access to industry data and a "much improved" evidence base compared to the previous year's findings.

Other notable factors cited in the "Measuring Music" survey as contributing to the growth in revenues include the upturn in the British economy and, in turn, greater consumer confidence, which fed into a buoyant live music industry.

The report does not include revenues generated by what UK Music defines as the "wider music industry," such as retail (both digital and physical), the sale of musical instruments, music press, artist lawyers, accountants and security and catering for live events, among others.

Commenting on "Measuring Music," British Culture Minister Sajid Javid said: "The U.K. music industry is one of our biggest success stories. Not only does it make a tremendous contribution to driving economic growth, but it plays a pivotal role in taking British culture to every corner of the globe. One in every 8 albums sold anywhere in the world is by a British artist, and I know that, with the ongoing support from Government, this dynamic sector will continue to flourish and thrive."

"Measuring Music" is available to download now from