4th Annual Music Matters Forum In Hong Kong Underway
June 3, 2009 at 5:37 AM (PT)
"The digital and physical markets can exist," said UNIVERSAL MUSIC JAPAN CEO/Chairman KEI ISHIZAKA during his keynote address at the 4th annual MUSIC MATTERS, ASIA PACIFIC’s Music Forum, which opened on JUNE 2nd at the GRAND HYATT in HONG KONG. Yet ISHIZAKA also let attendees know that "young people cannot live without their mobiles," a statement that will certainly be echoed by the 75 speakers and 300 companies that are a part of the three day conference.
With JAPAN officially recognized as the 2nd largest music market in the world and the largest physical market last year, hundreds of influential attendees from around the world paid close attention to ISHIZAKA’s opening remarks which underscored this year’s forum theme: From Content to Context. In his additional role as Chairman of the RIAJ, the local labels body of the country’s recording industry, ISHIZAKA was straightforward in admitting that record labels have now created segmented strategies for both younger and older (over 40 years old) listeners. "Digital music accounted for US$953 million last year, which is 20% of JAPAN’s total sales. But sales from half of the top 10 albums are taken up by artists who are over 40."
ISHIZAKA also addressed piracy issues and how the RIAJ is tackling them, by revealing that the body have initiated a combination of criminal charges, specially labeled websites and education campaigns to stop illegal downloads, which currently stands at 407 million mobile songs a year, far outstripping legal downloads (329 million in 2008).