PPL Collected More Than $342 Million in 2019 — And Paid All-Time-High Number of Performers

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London’s Tower Bridge. Photo Credit: Susan Yin

UK music licensing and performance rights organization Phonographic Performance Limited (PPL) has revealed that it collected more than $342 million (£271.8 million) worth of recording royalties on behalf of its members in 2019.

PPL unveiled the figure and an array of other 2019 fiscal information in a comprehensive financial breakdown, which was shared with Digital Music News. At a top level, 2019’s $342 million in collections represent a 10 percent (about $31.47 million) increase from 2018, according to PPL.

The noteworthy gain was produced by year-over-year upticks in broadcast and online income (two percent, for a total of roughly $107.62 million), public performance and dubbing (eight percent, for a total of about $125.38 million), and international collections (22 percent, for a total of approximately $109.14 million).

In explaining the broadcast and online revenue jump, PPL cited the closure of “major long-term licensing deals” with television stations and “an increase in the number of smaller radio broadcasters and online linear webcasters acquiring licenses.” Undoubtedly, the latter will be worth following in the coming months and years, as digital radio and podcasting become additionally popular and lucrative.

Public performance and dubbing growth was attributed to the efficiency and accessibility brought on by a joint venture with PRS for Music, PPL PRS, Ltd., which recorded its second full year in 2019. And international collections’ expansion resulted from agreements with global collective bodies, several of which, including some in Africa and Latin America’s quickly developing markets, submitted collections for the first time.

Addressing his organization’s fiscal report, PPL CEO Peter Leathem said: “2019 was a positive year for PPL as we saw record revenues and paid out performance royalties to more performers and recording rightsholders than ever before. Such success benefits the growing community that we represent both in the UK and internationally.”

PPL also paid more than 100,000 performers (approximately 108,000) for the first time in its history last year. Plus, the entity indicated that 2019 revenue is enabling it to assist individuals “whose other income sources have declined due to COVID-19,” including a more than $30 million payout in April as an advance on the scheduled June distribution.