October 2020 distribution

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a huge effect on the music industry, we’d like to reassure you that we are continuing to do everything we can to minimise the impact on your royalties. There has been significant growth in some areas of collections, but we have equally seen sharp declines in others, most notably Live, so your own October distribution will be dependent on number of different factors. So please do take the time to read the information below.

This October distribution totals over £171m for performing royalties and £26m for mechanical royalties, which is an increase of 4.6% compared to the same distribution last year.

Despite the challenges, International royalties are up 23% compared with last year, alongside an 83% increase in Overseas Cable TV royalties. This distribution also includes significant growth in Online royalties from ICE, the online licensing hub owned by PRS, GEMA and STIM, through which many members’ works are licensed and processed. Over the last twelve months we’ve worked hard with ICE to improve processes and make efficiencies which means royalties are flowing more quickly through to you, our members. This has resulted in a 148% increase in Multi-Territory Online royalties compared to October 2019.

Due to the closure of businesses that would usually play music (shops, bars, restaurants etc.), we unfortunately won’t be paying Public Performance and Public Reception royalties for Q2 2020 in October. This is because while these businesses were closed, they were not using music and therefore we were unable to collect licence fees. You may be used to seeing these royalties referenced on your statement under the following descriptions: Fitness & Dance, Background Music, Cinemas, UK General Live and Analogies (Shops & Stores, Restaurants & Cafes, General Recorded, DJ Events, etc.)

What about Public Performance or Public Reception royalties collected from any businesses that were open in Q2 2020?

So little was collected for this period that if we were to attempt to pay it out across all eligible members, the amounts would be very small and the majority of payments wouldn’t meet our minimum payment threshold. Therefore, we plan to combine this money with future collections and distribute them together as soon as is practical.

We will still be paying out some historic royalties for these sources, including the 2019 Public Performance year-end reconciliation payment and any Q1 Public Reception royalties that weren’t paid in July, so you may still see some payments from these areas coming through.

As we do every year, we will be reducing the threshold for payments to UK bank accounts from £30 to £1, meaning more of you may see a payment in this distribution.

We understand that this is a very difficult and uncertain time. If you are struggling, we have put together a member advice page that includes a list of organisations in the industry that are offering help, and the latest government advice.

We are trying to keep to our distribution schedule, which shows when you can expect a payment depending on where and when your music was used. We intend that the majority of your royalty payments will go out as planned, but there will be instances where this won’t be possible. We will always explain why this might be the case.

This distribution will contain the majority of our scheduled payments such as TV, Radio and International.

  • YouTube (Music) Q2 2019 – Q4 2019 – We’ve worked closely with YouTube and our partner ICE to help them generate their data into a format which allows us to pay out these royalties in October.
  • YouTube User Generated Content (UGC) Q3 2018 – Q4 2018 – We’ve been working hard to make sure these older payments are included in your October distribution. We’re pleased to say we now have the correct data and we’re able to pay these royalties out to you.
  • Deezer 2017 – As above, we’ve been working hard to pay out older royalties and we’re pleased to say we now have the data for the entirety of 2017 and can now pay this out in your October distribution.
  • Discovery top-up – We’ve recently agreed a new licence with Discovery, so if you received royalties for these stations between 2015 and 2019 you may receive a top up payment in this distribution.
  • Viasat World settlement – We’ve also recently agreed a new licence with Viasat, so we will be paying out performing royalties covering 2015 and 2019 in this distribution.
  • Public Performance 2019 year-end reconciliation payments – As mentioned above, if you’ve previously received Public Performance royalties in 2019, you may receive a top-up.
  • Live 2018 year-end reconciliation payments – If you’ve previously received Live royalties for 2018 performances, you may receive a top-up.
  • SACEM (French collecting society) 2018 withholding tax revenue – We’re pleased to say we’re now able to pay out this money to UK tax resident members in October, rather than December as originally planned.

Royalties from music used on:

  • Disney Life General Entertainment Online (GEOL) in 2019 – This was originally due to be paid from October 2019.
  • MCPS royalties for the BBC TV 2019 year-end reconciliation – This was originally due to be paid in July 2020.
  • Box TV in 2019 – This was originally due to be paid from July 2019.
  • Communicorp Q1 2020 – This was originally due to be paid in July 2020.
  • Online royalties from SACEM for Q1 2020 – This was originally due to be paid in July 2020.
  • Royalties received from Airlines for 2019 – This was originally due to be paid in July 2020.

Royalties from music used on:

  • Apple Download and Rental General Entertainment Online Licensing (GEOL) for Q1 2020 – We’re unable to pay this at the moment as licensing discussions are ongoing.
  • Google GEOL for 2019 and Q1 2020 – We’re unable to pay this at the moment as licensing discussions are ongoing.
  • Box TV for Q1 2020 and Q2 2020 – We haven’t received the payment from the licensee so we’re unable to pay this in October.
  • Turner for Q2 2020 – We’ve recently finished licensing discussions and need additional time to collect the royalties from the licensee.
  • MCPS royalties for BBC Radio between Q2 2019 and Q2 2020 - We need more time to review the data to make sure we can pay out the royalties correctly. PRS royalties are unaffected. We’re aiming to pay this in your December distribution.
  • Film, General & Broadcast and Online royalties from SIAE (Italian collecting society) - More time is needed to process this data to make sure we can pay it out accurately.

We’re aiming to include these payments in the next main distribution where possible.

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