Royalties collected by CISAC, the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers Societies, on behalf of songwriters, composers and creators worldwide totaled €7.9 billion ($8.7 billion) in 2014, a 2.8 percent rise on the previous year, according to the organization’s latest Global Collections Report.
Were it not for fluctuating exchange rates, total royalty collections would have grown 5 percent year-on-year, claims the document, which arrives a mere eight months after CISAC’s last Global Collections Report (published in February) covering the 2013 calendar year.
“We now have a very dynamic licensing market, so we tried as much as possible to close the gap between the year of collections and the year in which we issue our figures,” CISAC director general Gadi Oron told Billboard. “We’ve really put pressure on collecting societies and committed ourselves to bring this information as quickly as possible, so that people can get a better idea about what’s happening in the licensing market and get that information faster.”
As per the previous report, music still accounts for the bulk of CISAC’s collections (87 percent in total), with royalties totaling €6.9 billion ($7.6 billion), a 2.4 percent climb on 2013’s figure. Performing rights collections, which represent 79 percent of total revenues, were also up year-on-year, rising 3.8 percent to total €6.2 billion ($6.9 billion). In line with previous years, mechanical reproduction rights collection continued to decline, down 9 percent on 2013 to total €1.2 billion ($1.3 billion).
Across all repertoires (music, audio-visual, literature, visual arts, etc), royalties generated by digital and multimedia services grew by over 20 percent, with music making up 99 percent of digital collections. “This is an indication that our music societies have gone a good job. They have been dynamic and been offering more appealing and market driven solutions,” said Oron.
Of all royalties collected around the world by CISAC members only 6.5 percent are from digital services, a fact that Oron cites “as an indication of the opportunity that’s still there.” In the live music sector, CISAC’s 230 member societies across 120 countries collected €699 million ($770 million), up 1.9 percent on the previous year.
In terms of regions, Europe generated just over 60 percent of royalties -- equating to €4.9 billion ($5.4 billion). North America remains CISAC’s second largest region, accounting for 17 percent ($1.4 billion) of collections -- a 6.2 percent increase on the previous year’s return and the highest growth of any region. Asia-Pacific fared less well, generating $1.3 billion -- a 5.3 percent fall on the previous year that CISAC attributed to foreign exchange rates, particularly the Japanese Yen falling against the Euro. Latin America and Caribbean societies made up 6.7 percent of collections ($584 million) with Africa accounting for 0.7 percent to total royalties worldwide ($58 million).
The rate of growth among the BRIC countries (defined by CISAC as: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) slowed to 11 percent year-on-year, compared to 30 percent in 2013, to account for 5 percent ($455 million) of global royalty collections.
“Our report really sheds light on what’s happening in the market and what is the trend,” commented Oron. “The bottom line is that we are reporting excellent figures, especially in light of the fact that the operating environment remains quite tough and challenging in different parts of the world.” He went on to say: "To realize the full potential we need to work at different levels. We are working hard to lobby decision makers to make sure that the laws are there to make sure that all companies that commercially benefit form music share their profits with creators.”
Oron's views were echoed by CISAC president Jean Michel Jarre, who called authors’ rights "creators’ salaries and pension plans" in a statement accompanying the Global Collections Report. “These results should be credited to the robust and modern network of authors’ societies that operates around the world on behalf of creators: licensing our creative works and collecting and distributing authors’ rights for the greater good of the creative community,” stated Jarre.