British musicians see overseas revenue double

Matthew Bellamy Overseas royalties have been boosted by sell out stadium gigs by bands such as Muse.

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Big hits from the likes of Adele and Calvin Harris helped British artists earn £188m in overseas royalties last year, according to PRS for Music.

The organisation collects royalties from 150 countries on behalf of 90,000 UK songwriters, composers and music publishers.

During a "particularly strong" 2011, UK songwriters and composers earned £187.7m globally - up 10% on 2010.

Income earned abroad has doubled in the last decade, the PRS added.

Royalties are generated any time a song is played - whether it is on TV, radio, online or at a live event - and distributed between composers and performers.

PRS said that revenues had jumped from £88m in 2002 for two reasons: The popularity of British music abroad and "improved licensing".

Live music incomes saw substantial growth from £2.2m to £21m since 2002, due to sell-out stadium concerts for acts such as The Rolling Stones, Muse and Paul McCartney.

And the industry has reaped the benefits of successful American artists such as Rihanna and Nicki Minaj hiring British songwriters, such as Calvin Harris and Fraser T Smith, to compose their hits.

TV revenues have also risen from £29m in 2002 to £60m last year, partly thanks to British music being used on talent shows like X Factor and American Idol.

"Success story"

Karen Buse, director of International at PRS for Music said: "These are very strong trends which underpin the success of our songwriters and the UK music industry on the global stage.

"While it has been a particularly strong year for music distribution via platforms such as the 2012 London Olympics, this much is clear: Music is a great British success story," she said.

Rihanna Rihanna's We Found Love was written by British DJ and songwriter Calvin Harris.

"It contributes significantly to our economy and promotes our endemic creativity and culture."

Brazil is a healthy consumer of British music and will continue to be an important source of income, having delivered a revenue of £1.6m in the last two years, according to PRS.

The country has also become an increasingly attractive location for British artists to perform as a result of "unprecedented investment" in live concert venues, due to the country's successful bids to host the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the Olympic Games in 2016.

PRS said it hoped to boost revenue in the future by looking to emerging music markets such as China, India and Eastern Europe.

The UK, Sweden and the US are the only three countries in the world that are net exporters of music.

The royalties that UK songwriters, composers and music publishers receive from online sales has grown in recent years and while PRS said it remains "comparatively low" at £2m, it forecasts this figure is set to double by 2022.

PRS said overall global revenues for its members totalled £630.8m last year, up from £611m in 2010.

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