Music Publishing News: Spotify’s Revenue Rises, Songwriters Win Big Globally

publishing header

By Songtrust

We asked our friends over at Songtrust to compile a monthly round up of everything that happened in the wide world of music publishing. They are the experts in the subject — Songtrust works tirelessly to simplify royalty collection for artists — so it’s only best if you get it straight from the source! Without further ado, here’s the latest news in the world of music publishing.

Songwriters and publishers are seeing big rewards from international syncs

There’s perhaps no better example than the recent Apple Music ad featuring Drake & Future’s “Jumpman.” The ad has been viewed more than 20 million times since debuting in April on Taylor Swift’s Instagram account, and has been a win for Sony/ATV Music Publishing and Universal Music Publishing group, who represent Drake and Future, respectively. ASCAP and BMI reported revenue to US writers and publishers from sources outside the US of more than $590 million in 2015, proving how lucrative the use of copyrights in international markets is to music publishers.

ICE, Europe’s music licensing body, has signed its first agreement with Google’s music streaming service, Google Play

ICE, a collaboration between PRS for Music in the UK, STIM in Sweden, and GEMA in Germany, represents around 250,000 rights-holders across Europe and hopes this agreement will help streamline licensing, resulting in growth and more profit for artists and rights-holders. Google Play Music’s Head of International Music Publishing Partner Operations, Victoria Campoamor says, “We look forward to building a constructive relationship with ICE and to the realization of operational efficiencies from the new platform and its benefits to composers and publishers.”

Spotify has reported a dramatic increase in revenue, a slowdown in losses, and an increase in total users in 2015

28 million of the streaming service’s 89 million users are on the subscription tier, a 75% increase, which is twice as many subscribers as Apple Music at its last report. Free listening only brought in about 10% of the platform’s total revenue, while the subscription tier brought in €1.7 billion, or 89.7% of total revenues. Spotify paid the record industry €1.63 billion, about 83% of its revenue, in royalties last year.

The National Music Publishers’ Association has reached a deal with Dubset Media Holdings that will allow the NMPA’s independent members to collect publishing revenue from derivative works

This new streaming “sub-economy” is made possible through Dubset’s MixBANK, which cross-sections DJ mixes and remixes and identifies their constituent parts, determines the appropriate royalty splits, then services them to its clients, like Apple Music. Making participation in this new sub-economy available to individual songwriters and smaller publishers is a noteworthy advance, especially within the digital music economy.

ASCAP has agreed to pay $1.75 million in response to an investigation by the Department of Justice

This is regarding whether the performance rights organization was violating the old consent decree. One of the DOJ’s concerns was in regards to ASCAP giving advance payments to publishers in exchange for exclusive rights to license works. ASCAP says it had never enforced exclusivity and agreed to continue not to, in addition to agreeing to perform licensing negotiations without consultation with its board members which include big publishers like Universal Music.

Canada’s performing rights organization, SOCAN, has purchased music data company, MediaNet

MediaNet’s business-to-business music technology will allow SOCAN to offer 360-degree music rights administration to its four-million music creator and publisher members. The acquisition’s immediate benefit for SOCAN members is the increased matching on radio, TV, and other digital performances, with a level of data accuracy and transparency that few other music rights organizations can provide.


Use Code SOUNDFLY10 to get 10% off your registration fee when you sign up for Songtrust, and begin collecting royalties on your tracks today. Check out past round ups of music publishing news here.

songtrust-text-smallSongtrust provides a technology platform that enables independent songwriters, artists, publishers, distributors, managers, and other music industry professionals to collect their publishing royalties worldwide. Our industry-leading online solutions simplify music rights management, including the administration of music publishing assets, performing rights, and digital licensing. Songtrust helps collect the royalties you’ve earned from airplay, streams, and live performances around the world with simple one-stop registration, no legal headaches, and all while maintaining 100% ownership of your copyrights.

Pocket Queen course sidebar ad

Join our Mailing List

We offer creative courses, articles, podcast episodes, and one-on-one mentorship for curious musicians. Stay up to date!


6 Creative Ways to Stand Out in a Crowded Market

Authenticity and uniqueness are rare commodities in the music industry. Here’s how you can best communicate your brand and reap the benefits!


The Important Questions to Ask Yourself Next Time You Want to Give Up on Your Music Dreams

Just because you know this is what you want doesn’t mean you don’t call it into question… Be strong, visualize, and get back on the horse!


What Are the Different Tiers of Music Publicity Campaigns?

Thinking of hiring a publicist (or doing it yourself)? Here’s some helpful information that can assure you’re not wasting your time—or money.