ASCAP Tops $1 Billion In Worldwide Revenue For Second Consecutive Year
April 28, 2016 at 11:52 AM (PT)
ASCAP's domestic and foreign revenue topped $1 billion for the second year in a row, with a total of $1.014 billion for 2015. Domestic revenue hit an all-time high of $716.8 million, up $61 million over 2014, driving record high domestic distributions of $573.5 million, up 6.2% over 2014. ASCAP delivered $867.4 million in total royalty distributions to its 560,000 songwriter, composer and music publisher members in 2015.
ASCAP performing rights licensing returned 88 cents of every dollar collected to music creators, with an operating expense ratio of 12.3%. The number of performances ASCAP tracked, matched and processed for payment in 2015 increased by 14% to 570 billion. ASCAP also became the first U.S. performing rights organization to provide fractional share ownership information in its publicly available online database for each of the more than 10 million musical compositions in its repertory.
Commented ASCAP Pres. PAUL WILLIAMS: “ASCAP is a tireless advocate for the rights of music creators who depend on ASCAP to earn a living, whether it’s on CAPITOL HILL or at the negotiating table, and we are truly invested in their success. ASCAP's superlative results mean we are doing the best job possible for our songwriter and composer members even as we advocate for changes to the outdated music licensing laws that disadvantage songwriters in the today’s digital world. These results are a testament to why the world’s most talented songwriters choose to call ASCAP home.”
ASCAP CEO ELIZABETH MATTHEWS added: “2015 was a winning year for ASCAP members, who are the heart and soul of our organization. While the music industry is in the midst of tremendous change, ASCAP has stayed ahead of the curve with a strategic focus on revenue growth, operational efficiencies, technology and service innovations demonstrating that the collective licensing model delivers the best value proposition in the performing rights world. We are happy that we could deliver a 6.2% increase in domestic royalties to our members in 2015, and we remain committed to transforming into the most progressive operation ensuring that songwriters, composers, lyricists and music publishers can enjoy a sustainable living in today's music marketplace."
Domestic revenues of $716.8 million grew across all major categories, including Audio/Visual, New Media, General Licensing and Radio. In the Audio/Visual category, which covers broadcast and cable TV as well as top streaming services like AMAZON and NETFLIX, ASCAP closed 68 agreements representing 245 programming services and their related websites. General Licensing, which covers bars, restaurants, music venues, and similar businesses, saw record growth of $11.0 million, or 9.1%.
ASCAP songwriters crafted the biggest songs of 2015, topping 18 separate BILLBOARD year-end song charts with songs like THE WEEKND’s "Earned It (Fifty Shades of Grey)" (by members BELLY, JASON QUENNEVILLE and THE WEEKND; WIZ KHALIFA and CHARLIE PUTH's "See You Again" (by members ANDREW CEDAR and DJ FRANK E), and WALK THE MOON’s “Shut Up and Dance” (by members BEN BERGER, ELI MAIMAN, ROGER McMAHON, NICHOLAS PETRICCA, KEVIN RAY and SEAN WAUGAMAN).
Nearly 40,000 members joined ASCAP in 2015, including recent chart-toppers FETTY WAP, KELSEA BALLERINI and OMI.