ICE Services: the what, how and why
A unique hub for copyright, processing, licensing and business services.
There’s no denying it, the intricacies of the music industry are complicated. With over 9.3 billion digital song usages reported to ICE since the beginning of 2016 and 3 million musical works registrations received in 2017 (many with various creators, and each with different publishers), you can begin to understand why creating a simple solution is important.
Our vision is simple: we offer a suite of flexible services that deliver swift and accurate payments for songs or works used online and offline. We are increasing royalty payments back to our customers through our authoritative database, which means higher matching rates.
ICE began as an idea back in 2007 when PRS for Music and STIM decided to come together and pool their expertise with the aim of steering the industry forward. When GEMA also became a shareholder in 2015, ICE’s hub was established, from a copyright database to a licensing and processing ‘hub’ and, as of today, holds Europe’s largest music repertoire.
So, who are we?
Our experience is made up of various backgrounds and we are split across London, Berlin and Stockholm. Around 25% of staff are from our stakeholders: PRS for Music, STIM and GEMA. The other 75% include people from elsewhere in the music and entertainment industries, technology companies and start-ups.
What have we been up to?
We’re busy working alongside our customers - DSPs (digital service providers e.g. Spotify, Apple Music etc.), publishers and collecting societies - to continuously refine our services. We’re also onboarding GEMA as a copyright customer. Developing our company with industry greats enables us to move closer towards our shared goal: to provide increased value, accuracy and insights to our customers.
We’re already seeing good results. We’ll have paid out over £250 million in royalties by the end of 2017, with our average match rate at over 95% and we’re on track to deliver increasingly smoother and faster payments. This all means that there is more money going to creators than ever before.
We have two new initiatives launching in 2018, one for online licensing and the other to redefine our copyright processing. These aim to improve our processes, reduce our costs and ultimately, pass on the benefits - including reduced fees - to our customers.