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Warner financials confirm streaming boom continues to fuel record industry growth

By | Published on Wednesday 9 August 2017

Warner Music

Praise the Lord that we live in the era of Spotify. Hallelujah that we live in the age of Sheeran. If only we could merge the two somehow – make this the epoch of Sheerify – the entirety of Warner Music could retire forthwith to the Caribbean.

Warner Music yesterday confirmed that, if nothing else, the major record companies are doing very well thank you very much for asking out of the premium streaming boom, with overall revenues up 13.1% (15.5% if you ignore currency fluctuations). Digital income was up a pretty damn decent 30.2% (33% in constant currency), so that that revenue stream now accounts for 54.1% of total income. Monies from physical product were down of course, but not enough to stop the booming streams resulting in overall growth.

Putting the latest figures into the context of the general good news narrative being pushed by the major record companies in the last couple of years, Warner boss man Stephen Cooper noted that: “Our momentum continues with our eighth consecutive quarter of revenue growth – the last seven of which were up double digits. Our artists and songwriters are creating great music and our team is outperforming in a growing industry”.

Artists doing more than their fair share to boost Warner financials include Bruno Mars, Gorillaz, Clean Bandit and, of course, Ed Sheeran.

Though the wider record industry’s return to growth is thanks mainly, of course, to the boom in premium streaming services, chiefly Spotify and Apple Music. Which, of course, all continue to be loss-making. So there you go, still room for pessimism if you wish. But eight consecutive quarters of revenue growth, woo!