The total industry revenues grew from 570.7 Cr. in 2016 to 725.6 Cr. in 2017. This increase in revenue by 154.9 Cr. is the largest since 2011 according to IFPI data. The revenues from Music Streaming grew at a rate of 37.26% and revenues from digital music now amounts to over 91% of the Indian recorded music industry revenue. There were two primary factors driving this positive growth in digital music consumption, i.e. increased data consumption in the advent of cheaper data rates and greater smartphone penetration.
The digital revenue alone in 2017 was 665.6 Cr. which is greater than the combined industry revenue of 570.7 Cr. in 2016 by almost 95 Cr. Shridhar Subramaniam, President, Sony Music and Chairman, IMI is optimistic about the state of the industry and says “Last year’s figures were phenomenal and we were expecting the market to do well this year as well, but a 27% growth in 2017 has exceeded our forecasts. Going into 2018, our aim is to make music even more accessible, affordable and unlimited. To sustain this growth the industry will start laying the groundwork for a subscription eco-system .”
The upward trend in adoption of music streaming services has certainly helped digitalize the recording industry but is not yet steering consumers away from consuming music from pirated websites . Stream-ripping remains a major threat to the music industry in India . According to a 2017 study by IPSOS for IMI, 94% of the 900 surveyed music consumers in India admitted to using some form of piracy to access music.
Blaise Fernandes, President and CEO, IMI says “ Our story in the past two years has been one of success as evident from an exponential growth in revenue. We’re glad that digital music is claiming a larger part of the pie in line with the global trends. Various initiatives undertaken by the government like Digital India , Bharat Net, Cipam’s #lettalkIP program will enable the Indian music industry is to out-perform most evolved recorded music industries in the digital domain and climb up in rankings in the coming years.”
There has also been a small shift from ownership to access and downloads to subscription in the last two years. With international players like Amazon Music entering the market this year, the industry stakeholders plan to steer consumers towards affordable subscription plans to deliver unlimited high-quality content.
“While the 2017 figures may paint a pretty picture, Indian Music Industry is still greatly impacted by Digital Piracy and Value Gap.” Said Vikram Mehra Managing Director of Saregama “We must work together in curbing piracy through a multi-pronged approach involving various stakeholders at the state and central level . We must also empower the rights holders to allow them control of the usage of their works in the digital domain and protect their right to fair remuneration. That’s the only way for us to ensure continued double digital growth in the coming years.”