UK dominates European music sales
British artists were responsible for nearly one in four albums sold in Europe during 2015, according to BPI data.
In the six biggest export markets for the UK in Europe, British artists claimed almost one in six album sales during the year.
Almost all (95 per cent) of BPI members produce recorded music and services commercially available in EU markets.
Ninety per cent of respondents to a BPI survey reported that it was important for the UK to have an influence in framing rules that govern the sale or use of British music in Europe.
Some 70 per cent said the EU was either very important or quite important to their future prospects.
Adele led the strong performance by British artists in 2015. But there was also an impressive showing by a broad range of other UK acts, with Coldplay, Ed Sheeran, Mark Ronson, Muse, Sam Smith,One Direction, Mumford & Sons, George Ezra, The Prodigy, Calvin Harris, Steven Wilson, to name a few, as well as heritage acts such as Iron Maiden and Pink Floyd, each experiencing chart success across Europe to underline the strength in depth that the UK currently enjoys.
Worldwide music success
Exports from the UK recorded music sector grew by 8 per cent in 2015, underlining the UK's position as the second largest provider of music repertoire in the world. UK music exports generated £2.2bn of revenue during the year - or more than half the Gross Value Added of the music industry, according to Measuring Music 2016, the annual economic survey from UK Music.
UK music acts enjoyed their highest share of global album sales in recent years during 2015, accouting for one in six of all albums sold worldwide.
Performers from the UK achieved 17.1 per cent worldwide share by value of album sales, up from 13.7 per cent in 2014, and 11.8 per cent in 2010, according to a report from the BPI, the music industry body.
Five of the top 10 global albums were from UK acts including Adele, Ed Sheeran, Sam Smith, One Direction and Coldplay.
UK acts perfomed strongly in the key US market, accounting for 17.6 per cent of US album sales. The UK also did well in Australia (28.3 per cent share), Italy, (19 per cent), Canada (22.1 per cent), Germany (16.4 per cent), and Sweden (16.7 per cent).
According to data from the IFPI international organisation, the top 10 global recording artists in 2015 were:
1. Adele (UK)
2. Ed Sheeran (UK)
3. Taylor Swift (US)
4. Justin Bieber (Canada)
5. One Direction (UK)
6. Coldplay (UK)
7. Maroon 5 (US)
8. Sam Smith (UK)
9. Drake (USA)
10. The Weekend (Canada)
These positions are based on IFPI rankings which count worldwide album sales - including both physical and digital formats, track sales and streams.
For more information, visit the BPI website here.
EXPORT PERFORMANCE (Official data)
- The UK music industry generated £2.2bn of exports in 2015. This is almost 54 per cent of the music industry's Gross Value Added (GVA), which is twice the UK economy's average. (1)
- Export sales were distributed across musicians and composers (£946), music publishing (£520m), recorded music (£360m), music representatives (£268m), live music (£57m) and music producers, studios and staff (£24m). The biggest growth areas for exports were in live music (up 35 per cent year on year) and recorded music (up 8 per cent). (1)
- The UK market represents 9 per cent of global music revenues in 2012. (2)
- The UK remains one of the few net exporters of music, with royalties from abroad outweighing the payments sent outside of the country. (1)
- Between 2012 and 2015, the total contribution to the economy has risen by 17 per cent, while exports and employment have both soared by 11 per cent. In that time live music exports have shot up by 90 per cent.(1)
- The top-selling global artist album has come from a British act in eight of the last 11 years (2005-2015). (2)
- UK artists' share of album sales in North America stood at a 10-year high in 2015 - 17.6 per cent in the US and 22 per cent in Canada. Adele's '25' was the best-selling album of the year in both the US and Canada. (2)
UK music sales were strong across Europe in 2015. In nine of the past ten years, UK acts have accounted for over 15 per cent of album sales in Germany (16.4 per cent in 2015), while Adele, Muse and Coldplay helped UK artists’ share in France rise to 15.5 per cent (from 11.5 per cent in 2014). British music has always been well received in the Netherlands and share reached 33.4% in 2015 – no fewer than 26 of the top 100 albums of the year were by British artists. (2)
UK artists’ share of world album sales increased to 17.1 per cent in 2015, up from 13.7 per cent in 2014. This is the highest share on record.(2)
1. Measuring Music, UK Music, 2016
2. BPI Yearbook 2016