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News October 15, 2020

APRA AMCOS reports downgraded financial year, hit by COVID and bushfires

APRA AMCOS reports downgraded financial year, hit by COVID and bushfires

APRA AMCOS didn’t dodge the pandemic.

The effects of COVID-19 and last summer’s bushfire season impacted the bottom-line for the rights society, which today (15th October) reports a downgraded financial year and a small decline in royalty distributions. 

Group revenue came in at $474.5 million during its 2019-20 financial year, up by 0.6% but well below the budgeted figure of $488.9 million.

Also, royalties payable to its member songwriters, publishers, affiliated societies and rights holders were $407.3 million, down almost 1% year-on-year.

It should come as no surprise, public performance income was hardest hit. Income from this crucial stream came to $73 million, almost $20 million below the figure reported last year.

There’s more pain to come.

“With restrictions remaining on live music, concerts and touring, music royalties are expected to take a more substantial hit in 2020-21,” reads a statement.



It’s not all gloom. In its Year In Review, published today, the society reports $206 million in revenue from digital channels, up 17.4% from the same period last year.

International revenue lifted to $54.4 million, an all-time high, thanks to the international success of the Tones And I, Jawsh 685, Joel Little, Sia, 5 Seconds of Summer, Tame Impala and many more.

“Individual and collective resilience has been tested and we’ve had to adapt quickly,” comments APRA AMCOS CEO Dean Ormston.

“As the bushfires devastated enormous areas of Australia, and then COVID-19 spread across the globe, we moved quickly to provide direct support and advocate to government the plight of those that live and work in the original gig economy.”

With support from government, the music industry will evolve, as it always does.

By definition, notes Ormston, it’s a “fast moving, dynamic, agile, locally invested and globally facing industry.”

Dean Ormston apra amcos CEO

Dean Ormston

He continues, “Now more than ever there is an opportunity to redefine and build the local and international opportunity for the local music industry, based on an integrated whole-of government approach that fully reflects music’s impact across society.”

For the first time this year, the PRO is publishing its Top 50 Australian songs streamed in Australia, and top NZ songs on the other side of the Tasman.

Tones And I and Flume rule the Australian streaming charts while Drax Project, Six60 and BENEE lead the New Zealand streaming charts.

The criteria for inclusion is in the list is where the credited writer or a co-writer is an APRA member.

This article originally appeared on The Industry Observer, which is now part of The Music Network.

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