UK Music’s inaugural Music By Numbers report published today reveals the key role music plays in the economy.
The key facts in Music By Numbers 2019 include:
- The UK music industry contributed £5.2 billion to the UK economy in 2018.
- The Live Music sector made contribution of £1.1 billion in 2018 – up 10 per cent from £991 million in 2017.
- Employment in the industry hit an all-time high of 190,935 in 2018.
- The total export revenue of the music industry was £2.7 billion in 2018.
- Music tourism alone contributed £4.5 billion spend to the UK economy in 2018 – up 12 per cent from £4 billion in 2017.
- Overseas visitors to UK shows and festivals surged by 10 per cent from 810,000 in 2017 to 888,000 in 2018.
The flagship annual economic study by UK Music and its members showed that the music industry continued to grow last year across every sector.
Successful British acts including Ed Sheeran, Dua Lipa and Sam Smith, who helped exports of UK music soar in 2018 to £2.7 billion.
Millions of fans who poured into concerts ranging from grassroots music venues to large festivals generated a contribution of live music to the UK’s economy of £1.1 billion – up 10 per cent on 2017.
UK Music measures the health of the music business each year by collating data from its partners about the industry’s contribution in goods and services, known as Gross Value Added (GVA), to the UK’s national income or Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Exports are part of this contribution.
Although Glastonbury Festival did not take place in 2018 when the data for the report was collected, the rise in the number of other festivals across the UK, particularly in Scotland, such as TRNSMT and Sunday Sessions, boosted the numbers.
Employment in the Live Music sector rose by seven per cent to 30,529 – up from 28,659 in 2017.
The recorded music sector contributed £568 million in GVA to the UK economy, which is a rise of five per cent on £535 million in 2017, and £478 million in exports – an increase of eight per cent on £452 million. Reflected within this figure, label revenues rose three per cent in 2018, representing the third year of consecutive growth.
UK Music CEO Michael Dugher said: “Our report reveals firm evidence that the British music industry is in great shape and continuing to lead the world. The figures are hugely encouraging and show that, as well as enriching the lives of millions of people, music makes an incredible contribution to the UK’s economy.
“Live music is now at a record high and continues to draw millions of fans from both the UK and abroad to our arenas and smaller venues alike. Music exports are another amazing success story with the best of British creative talent being showcased across the globe. However, this is not a time for complacency. We face many challenges to ensure we keep our music industry vibrant, diverse and punching above its weight.
“We need to do more to protect grassroots venues by helping them combat soaring business rates. We need to nurture the talent pipeline, including by reversing the decline of music in education, so that children from every background have access to music.
“We need to make sure that creators get fair rewards for their content and are not ripped off by big tech. And we urgently need to ensure that the impact of Brexit doesn’t put in jeopardy the free movement of talent, just at the time when we should be looking outwards and backing the best of British talent right across the world”.
Writing in the report’s foreword, culture secretary Nicky Morgan said: “This year’s Music By Numbers report reveals the industry is worth an amazing £5.2 billion to the economy and the live music sector is breaking the £1 billion barrier. We are seeing exciting new artists like Sam Fender, Dave and Little Simz achieve great success and the figures in this report are testament to the outstanding creativity of our world-leading artists.
“As this report reveals, music is a hugely successful British export worth £2.7 billion a year and we need to work together to ensure this success continues. We know there are also some specific challenges for the music industry. From protecting intellectual property to safeguarding the grassroots sector and growing the talent pipeline, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport will continue working with UK Music to allow this country’s music industry to grow and flourish”.
Read the full report here.