Germany recorded music revenues up 5.5% in first half of 2022


It’s not that long since the recorded music industry was feared to be in terminal decline in terms of its annual revenues, so Music Ally doesn’t like to take year-on-year growth for granted. That said, we’re keeping an eye on any deceleration for that growth, to understand whether some of our industry’s biggest markets may be approaching a ceiling.

Witness the latest figures from German labels body BVMI, which cover the first half of 2022. It’s a positive story: recorded music revenues grew by 5.5% to €967m ($997m), buoyed by 9.1% growth in audio streaming.

However, a cautious note may be struck by the fact that overall revenues had grown by 12.4% in the first half of 2021, and by 10% for that year overall – suggesting a slowdown in growth. Note also that the 9.1% audio streaming growth in 1H22 is less than half the 19.9% rise in the same period a year ago.

CEO Florian Drücke was understandably optimistic, suggesting that the continued growth “is very good news in the current situation” – referring, we think, to the rocky economic climate this year. “At 5.5 percent, the curve is not quite as steep as at the end of 2021 with a really outstanding industry increase of 10 percent – but the growth segments audio streaming and vinyl continue to develop positively.”

Not so long ago, Germany (like Japan) was seen as hanging on to physical sales for longer than other big music markets. However, things have changed quickly: in the first half of 2022 audio streaming accounted for 73.3% of total revenues in Germany, while digital overall was 80.2%.

However, as Drücke pointed out, physical is still playing a role, and while CD sales were down by 6.5% in the first half of 2022, that decline has slowed “significantly” from its 16.4% in the comparable period last year. Vinyl’s growth (up 12.3%) is helping to bolster the physical share.

Written by: Stuart Dredge