SoundExchange Distributes $462 Million in 2012

SoundExchange distributed a total of $462 million in royalty payments to artists and their labels in 2012.

That’s up 58% compared to 2011, according to the performance rights clearing house.

Fourth quarter 2012 distribution also increased with more than 22,000 payments totaling approximately $134.9 million, a nearly 10% increase from its Q3 2012 distribution of $122.5 million.

Internet radio, satellite radio and cable radio services pay the royalties for their performance of sound recordings; SoundExchange distributes the monies. Much of the increase is due to payments from Pandora, which pays some 50% of its revenue toward royalties.

SoundExchange President Michael Huppe says the increasing annual royalty payments are an indication of where the industry is heading. “As digital radio continues to grow, so should the amount that performing artists and rights owners receive for the use of their content.”

The organization has matched databases with several other groups to find more artists to distribute royalties to such as BandPage, CD Baby, American Federation of Musicians and The AFM and AFTRA Intellectual Property Rights Distribution Fund. In 2012, SoundExchange also launched an online platform to streamline its registration and membership process. That meant 15,000 new artists, labels and rights holders registered to receive their royalty distribution from SoundExchange in 2012.


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