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News February 18, 2021

Indie music sector’s revenue, employment & investment during COVID-19 to be revealed

Senior Journalist, B2B
Indie music sector’s revenue, employment & investment during COVID-19 to be revealed

The Australian independent music sector will have a clear idea of how its revenue, employment and investment have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic by mid-2021.

The data will come from London-based Worldwide Independent Network (WIN)’s flagship market research project WINTEL.

Previous WINTEL editions covered the period 2015 to 2017, with a broad look at activity in 33 countries, including Australia, where WIN has a close relationship with the Australian Independent Record Labels Association (AIR).

After a hiatus, WIN has announced that WINTEL is returning in 2021 – but with a difference: it will provide deep-dive figures on each territory. A broader look at the industry will follow a few months later.

AIR general manager Maria Amato told TMN: “This edition of WINTEL aims to provide analysis by country which will eliminate the need for each trade association to complete their own respective survey.

“AIR will publish the final WINTEL report via its website and newsletter when complete.”

Working with Berlin-based House of Research, WIN is calling out for the indie sector to fill in a survey to gather data on which to base its reports. The survey, which is bilingual for the first time, closes on March 25, and those in the Australian sector are urged to participate.

“Data collection, analysis and reporting is crucial to demonstrate the value and strength of the global independent music sector,” Amato said.

“It is a vital tool for lobbying, advocacy and decision making and can also assist with securing funding and investment.”

Amato joined the WIN board in early February along with reps from indie trade associations in Japan and Canada.

The importance of WINTEL is that, for the first time, it based figures on the ownership of indie tracks rather than on their distribution, which skews figures towards major labels. In 2015, Taylor Swift for instance came under Universal’s figures although she was in fact signed to the indie Big Machine.

WIN’s approach put the indie labels’ share of the global market at 37.6%, virtually double what was originally thought, and generated worldwide revenues of US$5.6 billion in 2015. The 2017 figures saw indies’ market share rise to 39.9%.


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