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British songwriters share in record payout 

20 April 2009

PRS for Music, the organisation that collects royalties for songwriters and composers, today published details of members’ royalty payments for the performances of their music in the UK and abroad.

PRS for Music distributes royalty payments to members four times a year and from Monday members will receive payment of their share of a distribution totalling £117m* for the three months to 31 March 2009.

PRS for Music will hold its AGM on April 30, with a keynote address by Communications Minister Lord Carter.


  • In order to secure the distribution, PRS for Music analysed 19.7 million performances of music. More than 743,000 individual musical works were identified as being performed and paid a royalty.
  • UK royalties account for 65% of the current distribution, with 35% coming from international markets, notably the US, Germany and France.
  • Since 1998 the % of females joining PRS for Music to earn music royalties has jumped 30%.
  • Since 2006 (when Lilly Allen hit the charts) the % of new female members has jumped 20%.
  • Talks between PRS for Music and Google to discuss the licensing of YouTube following Google's decision to block premium video content on the service in the UK are yet to reach a satisfactory conclusion.
  • Britain’s creative industry employs two million people and contributes £60bn a year – 7.3% - to the British economy. 

Steve Porter, Chief Executive at PRS for Music said:
PRS for Music exists to ensure the song writers and composers get paid when their works are played, performed or reproduced and I’m delighted we’ve been so successful in both promoting music use and paying those who created it.  These royalties sustain this vital UK industry; nurture new talent as well as enabling our members to earn while they continue to create the music we love.”    

* inclusive of VAT & UK income tax

About PRS for Music

PRS for Music represents the rights of over 125,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers in the UK. As a membership organisation it ensures creators are paid whenever their music is played, performed or reproduced, championing the importance of copyright to protect and support the UK music industry. The UK has a proud tradition of creating wonderful music that is enjoyed the world over and PRS for Music has been supporting the creators of that music since 1914.

PRS for Music provides business and community groups with easy access to over 10m songs through its music licences. In an industry worth over £4.1bn PRS for Music is uniquely placed to be a voice for music and music creators. Collecting £537.4m in 2015, PRS for Music is one of the world’s most efficient combined rights organisations. With over 100 representation agreements in place globally, PRS for Music's network represents over two million music creators.

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