UK Music Industry Sales Cracked $2.4 Billion During 2022 As Vinyl Outsold CDs For the First Time Since 1987, Report Shows

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London, England. Photo Credit: Benjamin Davies

Thanks largely to continued streaming and vinyl growth, UK music industry sales increased by about three percent during 2022 and approached £1.99 billion, according to a newly released preliminary report.

This and other interesting data points came to light in an analysis from London’s Digital Entertainment and Retail Association (ERA), which bills itself as “the trade body representing digital services and retailers offering music, video and games.”

According to the organization, which counts as board members execs from Spotify, Amazon Music, SoundCloud, and others, the total value of the UK home entertainment market jumped roughly 6.9 percent to crack £11.08 billion in 2022.

Within the figure, music sales accounted for £1.99 billion, the highest total since 2003 and a year-over-year (YoY) uptick of approximately three percent, as initially noted. And in keeping with longstanding trends, the lion’s share of the UK music industry sales total derived from streaming, the resource shows.

Specifically, the UK music industry generated over £1.66 billion from streaming during 2022, per an estimate provided by the ERA and the British Phonographic Industry, up five or so percent from 2021.

Also in keeping with well-documented trends, the UK’s physical music sales declined by 3.8 percent YoY to £280.4 million, compared to a 17.5 percent YoY falloff for downloads (£45.4 million total), according to stats from the Official Charts Company and included in the ERA report.

The physical sum consists of £150.5 million attributable to vinyl (up 11 percent YoY) and £124 million from CDs (down 17.4 percent YoY). 2022 was the first year since 1987 to see vinyl outsell CDs by value in the UK, the ERA communicated.

While the entity will confirm precise full-year figures (and disclose additional data) in its final report in March, higher-ups have already confirmed that perennial bestseller Harry Styles had released the most popular album (Harry’s House) and track (“As It Was”) in the UK music industry on the year.

(Spotify Wrapped previously identified the same consumption benchmarks – besides indicating that Taylor Swift had racked up the most on-platform UK streams of any artist during 2022.)

Meanwhile, vinyl’s years-running stateside growth is showing few signs of slowing down, as the format’s sales during the week ending on December 22nd reportedly reached a high not seen since at least 1991.

Additionally, vinyl is reportedly performing well in Germany, and 2022 brought positive developments (including a funding round for record manufacturer elasticStage and the debut of a new pressing plant in the UK) that could alleviate the format’s production woes.