Retail audio products

AP1 and AP2 licences

We offer two main licences for companies that manufacture or distribute audio-only products for retail sale. This covers:

  • CD
  • Vinyl
  • Cassette
  • Other audio formats agreed with MCPS

Is AP1/AP2 right for me?

Do you make a limited number of copies for direct sale through gigs or a personal website? The Limited Manufacture may be more suitable.

The two options

Application also subject to credit checks and bank reference



Customer needs credit check and approval by PRS for Music board



Payment basis

On net copies shipped per quarter

On copies manufactured

Payment terms

Following invoice

Before manufacture

What our AP1 and AP2 licenses cover 

The Audio Product licenses cover the payment of mechanical royalties only.

Mechanical royalties are generated when a composition is re-produced on a physical format such as CDs and Vinyl. Mechanical royalties are paid to songwriters for the use of their musical works.

Sound recording rights are separate from mechanical and must be licensed directly from record companies (where applicable).

Our Audio Product Licenses

AP2 – A licence is required before manufacture and must cover all copies made.

AP1 – This is a blanket licence where royalties are paid quarterly in arrears covering copies shipped from distributors to retailers.


The Audio Product licenses are calculated by the Published Dealer Price (PDP) or Retail Price if you do not have a distributor.

8.5% of Published Dealer Price OR (if unavailable) 6.5% of Retail Price = multiplied by number of copies

The royalties charged are reduced proportionately if any musical works on the product are in the public domain (no longer in copyright) or are non-MCPS repertoire.

Apply for an AP2 licence

Customers that cannot or choose not to fulfil the administrative requirements of the AP1 licence can apply for an AP2 licence. 

AP2 application process (all before manufacture)

Apply for AP2 here 

  1. We send an invoice (within 10 days of receipt of application)
  2. Customer pays invoice (within 28 days of issue date)
  3. Manufacture of product can begin

Promotional allowance

When licensees are manufacturing over 500 units, they can opt for a promotional allowance of up to 25%. The maximum number of promotional copies allowed under the AP2 agreement is 250 (where 1000+ units manufactured).

AP2 exclusions

MCPS songwriter, composer and publisher members have the right to set up an exclusion of their own record company from royalty collection arrangements. 

Apply for an AP1 licence

Pass a credit check

Potential customers must be approved, then when operating under the scheme,  take on additional administration to satisfy the requirements of the AP1 licence. Royalties are paid quarterly in arrears.

AP1 reporting process

  1. Send 'Statement of Shipments' (SOS) to MCPS quarterly (up to 21 days after each calendar quarter)
  2. We send an invoice following SoS (within 17 days of receipt)
  3. Customer pays invoice (within 7 days of issue date)

Please note that, in addition to the reporting process, you need to submit product details to MCPS at least 7 days before release.

More information

Here's a selection of other documents and links you may find useful:

Additional licenses you may need

Music Promotions to Trade (AP4) - Promo CDs for music industry (in excess of those under AP1 and AP2)

Contact us

If you would like more information about this licence scheme, please contact us by email at

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