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Explaining how royalties are distributed to BBC radio stations 

17 January 2013

A lot of people have asked us how we distribute royalties from the deal PRS for Music has with the BBC. Here is a simple explanation using Radio Cymru and the BBC Asian Network to help explain how things are calculated. 

Royalty payments per station are calculated using a station’s audience size and its reach. These figures are obtained from RAJAR.

More details can be accessed on RAJAR figures from www.rajar.co.uk

The BBC Asian Network royalty rate is £4.08 and the Radio Cymru rate is £0.52 per minute. We allocate royalties to the stations from the overall BBC deal as follows:

  • Half of this allocation is over the potential audience, half over the actual number of listeners
  • BBC Asian Network is aimed at a UK wide audience of 52 million with an actual audience of 584,000
  • Radio Cymru is aimed at a Welsh national audience of 2.5 million with an actual audience of 142,000
  • Radio Cymru also plays around 30% less music than BBC Asian Network
  • Therefore, given the BBC Asian Network had a potential number of listeners 20 times larger than Radio Cymru, and an actual listenership 4 times greater (as per RAJAR), the per minute rate is more



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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