Toronto – The success of Canada’s music creators on the world stage continues to grow, and Canadian music is proving to be a hot export commodity.
So much so that new figures from SOCAN – the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada – found a continuing trend over the last five years, where the international earnings of its more than 115,000 members increased from $39-million in 2007 to $47-million in 2012, and an increase of 21 per cent in the past year alone.
Moreover, the number of SOCAN-member songwriters and composers who received royalties from outside of Canada doubled from 2007, growing to 20,425 at the end of 2012.
When original music is played on TV, radio, online, or performed live, royalties are generated for those who composed the work. This revenue is tracked and collected by SOCAN, which then distributes it to members who have earned fair compensation for their music.
Speaking about the global success of Canadian music, SOCAN’s CEO, Eric Baptiste said, “The growth in international royalties underscores the increasing popularity of Canadian music, where we continue to formulate relationships and introduce policies beyond our borders to improve fair licensing of music for use in business. Some of Canada’s strongest opportunities lie abroad and SOCAN continues to foster international collective management relationships that benefit our members, the music industry, and the Canadian economy overall.”
International revenues have increased in large part because of strong SOCAN-member activity. On behalf of its members, SOCAN collects royalties from countries with which it has it agreements in Europe, North America, Asia, Australia, Africa and South America.
Europe has traditionally been the largest contributor to international royalties, accounting for 57 per cent of the total international revenues identified by SOCAN last year. France represented the largest market for Canadian music in continental Europe, where collections amounted to $7.3-million. Revenues grew by 17 per cent from 2007.
As in previous years, North America continues to be a steady revenue generator, with royalties totalling $14.8-million in 2012. Eighty per cent of royalties collected in this region were attributed to traditional media sources like radio and television – consistent with global figures, where radio and TV remain the dominant category for royalties.
The rising success of Canadian music is also evident in the Asia-Pacific and South America regions, where revenue collections doubled in the last five years.
International Royalties Highlights
- Following France, the United Kingdom continues to be a hotbed for Canadian musicians, with collections totalling $5.1-million last year, followed by Germany ($2.4-million), Italy ($2.2-million), and the Netherlands ($2.2-million).
- Members have seen their music grow in popularity in Argentina, with an annual growth rate of 25 per cent.
- The Asia-Pacific regions collections doubled to four per cent during the same five-year period, with Australia leading the regions collections at $1.7-million in 2012.
- In 2012, Brazil accounted for 80 per cent of total revenues in South America, compared with 68 per cent in 2007.
- In 2012, South America represented nearly three per cent of total foreign revenues, an increase from 0.5 per cent in 2007.
- SOCAN distributes 100 per cent of international revenue collections back to its members.
SOCAN works with affiliated music rights organizations around the world to drive home the message on behalf of its members that, wherever their music is played, they will receive fair rates for their work. Musicians representing Canada are adding positively to Canada’s international “brand” and in so doing, are creating opportunities for touring, marketing and industry development.
The vast majority of SOCAN’s more than 115,000 members are small business entrepreneurs, honing their songwriting talent to develop a career in music creation.
SOCAN is a member-based organization that represents the Canadian performing rights of more than three-million Canadian and international music creators and publishers. SOCAN is proud to play a leading role in supporting the long-term success of its more than 115,000 Canadian members, and the Canadian music industry overall. SOCAN licenses more than 125,000 businesses in Canada, and distributes royalties to its members and music rights organizations around the world. SOCAN also distributes royalties to its members for the use of their music internationally in collaboration with its peer societies.