Germany's Digital Music Revenues Increased 25% In First Half of 2011
Germany's Digital Music Revenues Increased 25% In First Half of 2011

In the three countries of the German language music market, Germany, Switzerland and Austria, the economic turnover from 2010 to 2011 was full of contrasts.

While the official figures will be reported on April 19 in Berlin, Dr. Florian Drücke, managing director of the German association of the music industry (BVMI) in Berlin told Billboard that for the first time since 1997, sales of physical copies and downloads did not decrease from 2010's €1.5 billion. The sales from digital downloads increased markedly from 2010 to 2011, going up 28 percent. Austria also reported positive unit sales of 3.5%. In Switzerland, however, the music market plunged..

The music market in Austria suffered a 6.5% decline in revenues to €174 million compared to 2010, but an increase of 24 million in units sold. The Austrian online market reported an increase of double digit figures with a total turnover of €24 million and a 14% boost last week. Downloads and album bundles increased €10 million and gained 22% in 2011. Downloads of single songs increased 15% to €9 million.

With Spotify, Simfy, Deezer and Juke, various streaming services hit the market in 2011 and made over €1 million. With an increase of 32%, streaming had the biggest boost in the music market. Physical sound carriers made a total of €124 million. CDs made €113 million (down from €125 million in 2010), still the best-selling music product in Austria.

Philip Ginthör, CEO of Sony Music Germany, Austria and Switzerland and Vice President of IFPI Austria in Vienna said to Billboard: "The Austrian government has to finally arrive in the digital age and protect intellectual property on the internet. Those who create, produce and market music need also in the digital age the chance to get an adequate remuneration."

Franz Medwenitsch. Managing Director of IFPI Austria: "The international market in 2011 speaks because of the sensational success of an "Adele-effect," This effect is called in Austria "Andreas Gabalier-effect" with the singer's sensational sales of modern MOR music."

The Swiss music market had dramatic revenue decreases of 16 percent in 2011. In Switzerland sales from the record market decreased 23.2 million Swiss Francs to 124.1 million Francs (about €103 million). The 18 percent increase in the digital market could not offset the decrease on the physical market. The digital market increased from 26.3 million Francs to 31.1 million Francs. The physical market reported a decrease of €28 million. In 2010 the total turnover already declined 12 percent to 147.3 million Francs.

Managing director of the Swiss IFPI in Zurich, Lorenz Haas said in a statement: "Compared to the daily music consumption, the income is far too low. To produce music, to market it and to sell it is expensive. To make legal music offers profitable in the long run, it is necessary to protect them in a better way against illegal competition. Politicians still put up with the steady loss of jobs in the Swiss music business. This laissez-faire attitude is not acceptable and finally leads to an economical and cultural flattening."