The recorded music market in France saw 0.4% growth in the first six months of 2020, driven by streaming, for which revenues were up 17.7%.
Although obviously modest, the market’s uplift in H1 2020 forms part of a wider trend to have emerged in the global recorded music industry this year: streaming-fuelled growth in some of the world’s biggest music markets, in spite of the pandemic.
Last week, US recorded music body RIAA revealed that total recorded music retail revenues in the US for the first six months of this year increased 5.6% to $5.65bn.
We also learned last week that Spain’s record industry saw a wholesale revenue increase of 4% in the first half of this year.
That positive announcement also followed last month’s news that Germany’s recorded music industry was up 4.8% in the first six months of 2020 on a retail basis.
According to a half-year industry update published by French trade body SNEP last Wednesday (September 16), total recorded music industry revenues generated in France in H1 2020 increased to €279 million ($304.6m) from €278m ($303.5m) in H1 2019.
Streaming, which generated revenues of €223m ($243.5m) in H1 2020, was up 17.7% year-on-year. Streaming represented 80% of total revenue for the six-month period, compared to 68.3% in H1 2019.
The top 200 titles that were streamed the most in H1 2020 ( via paid subscriptions) generated 3.4 billion streams, versus 3 billion in the first half of 2019.
Suffering from what SNEP states was the “brunt of the health crisis” due to the closure of retailers during quarantine, physical revenues fell by 36.8%, from €88m ($96m) in H1 2019 to €56m ($61m) in the first six months of this year.
The decline, according to SNEP “is the direct consequence of [Covid-19]”. The trade body notes that physical sales are particularly resilient in France compared to other western territories, thanks to the market’s large network of retailers.
Physical format revenues fell 5% in H1 2019 versus the same six-month period in 2018. Vinyl sales, which declined 14% in H1 2020, accounted for 31% of physical revenues in period, compared to 24.6% in the first half of 2019.
CD sales meanwhile, fell by 39% in H1 2020.
Digital revenues in France exceeded physical revenues for the first time ever in 2018, and accounted for 57% of the market (€335m)
The country’s recorded music market saw growth of 5.4% in 2019, with total revenues of $867m.
“Given the close link and the complementarity between recorded music and the stage, it is essential that the concerts resume as soon as possible under satisfactory economic and health conditions.”
Alexandre Lasch, SNEP
Alexandre Lasch, Managing Director of SNEP said: “These efforts, combined with the resistance of the progression of streaming (+ 17.7%), have made it possible to offset the marked decline in physical sales (-36.8%) due to the closure of most outlets.
“Given the close link and the complementarity between recorded music and the stage, it is essential that the concerts resume as soon as possible under satisfactory economic and health conditions. ”
All € to $ currency conversions made at 1.092 USD-to-EUR H1 2020 average, as estimated in Vivendi’s half-year results.Music Business Worldwide