The world’s first integrated licensing and processing hub


ICE is the result of a joint venture between PRS for Music, STIM and GEMA with the collective aim of developing the world’s first integrated music copyright, licensing and processing hub, encouraging copyright data accuracy, aggregation of repertoires for multi-territory licences and the elimination of parallel processing against incompatible works databases.

ICE brings a unique offering to customers, not currently met elsewhere.  It offers a flexible suite of services and has been developed from best-in-class technologies that will deliver unparalleled economies of scale, speed, efficiency, accuracy and business intelligence reporting.  It is the fruition of a partnership that harnesses years of combined experience in collective management and servicing, which has shaped the digital market from the outset.

The benefits will be wide reaching, offering solutions to all rightsholders. The economies of scale and increased efficiencies will also deliver cost saving benefits to all. The hub offers a potential transformative benefit to new and smaller music repertoires as inclusion into the Core licence enables the potential for greater access to Digital Service Providers (DSPs).

ICE is evolving in the most exciting way. It will continue to be a world-class authoritative copyright database, which launched in 2010, with the addition of new systems and services that enable it to expand to offer the world’s first integrated music copyright, licensing and processing hub.

There are a number of ways in which ICE offers unparalleled transparency, accuracy and accessibility of data. The authoritative copyright database powering it ensures that we offer a complete picture of rights ownership for the repertoires managed by the hub, resulting in a reduction across split-copyright processing. This means that ICE reports will be authoritative and complete. ICE will offer business intelligence reports, ensuring that the data can provide clients with a powerful business tool to assist them in growing their businesses.

The launch of these new services was a defining moment for the music industry. We had a vision to support the fragmented music market by developing a hub that would encourage the aggregation of music repertoires and offer state-of-the art rights management systems run from a single, authoritative database.

ICE is unique – there is nothing else that offers access to a vast repertoire of multi-territory music works and with the efficiency and power of new technology. We set about building a solution for the fragmented music market, and we have drawn from our vast experience over the years of collective music rights management to help build a multi-territory copyright, licensing and processing hub that will serve rightsholders and their digital customers very well.

We collaborated to develop a transformative and very flexible service offering to fit the needs of different rightsholders and DSPs. The integrated systems have been built from the ground up to provide unparalleled speed, accuracy and economies of scale. This hub will scale up and handle huge data volumes.

We’ve been in this business a long time and have been servicing and shaping the digital market from the outset. This expertise has enabled us to develop an innovative and outstanding multi-territory online music rights licensing and processing hub.

For online licensing and processing (Core licence), ICE indirectly represents over 290,000 composers, songwriters and publishers. This comprises of current PRS for Music, STIM and GEMA members and also includes repertoire from some of the leading independent music publishers.

The benefits for the hub include:

  • ICE has sound credentials and the backing of parent organisations representing significant repertoire with years of combined experience of music processing and licensing.
  • ICE will make it simpler for DSPs to obtain some of the multi-territory online licences they need for Europe and beyond.
  • In addition to having one licence, they will receive one invoice for PRS for Music, STIM and GEMA repertoire, instead of three.
  • That invoice will be produced from one data source ensuring that the number of copyright pictures used throughout the industry is reduced, enabling greater invoicing accuracy.
  • ICE will enable simplified licensing negotiations for digital music services, reducing barriers for innovative new online services.
  • Rightsholders will benefit from faster and more accurate invoicing at a time when the usage data from online services is growing from billions to trillions annually.
  • ICE will make a major contribution to online cultural diversity as it brings multi-territory licensing within reach of smaller repertoires.
  • ICE will reduce processing costs because of its unparalleled economies of scale.
  • Rightsholder customers will benefit from competitive administration fees with a stepped reduction over time as the model scales.
  • Finally, their authoritative multi-territory copyright service enables full transparency for all rightsholders, with confidence inspired by collective ownership.

ICE is designed to provide solutions to the problems of the multi-territory online music market. It will enable simpler access to music licences and swifter and more accurate money flows from DSPs to rightsholders. It has been designed to assist the growth of the digital music market to the benefit of all players.

Our vision is that ICE will provide the industry with the benchmark for great solutions and service in the multi-territory licensing.

PRS for Music, STIM and GEMA are parent organisations and ICE is a set of separate legal entities.

They have collaboratively built a hub that builds on the very best technologies in the field and their collective and extensive experience in multi-territory online licensing, data matching, processing and copyright services.

ICE offers the following services:

  • Copyright – providing state of the art online matching and processing services, together with authoritative multi-territorial copyright services.
  • Online Processing – providing business services including invoicing, legal support and business intelligence analysis. 
  • Online Licensing – providing consolidated licensing of PRS for Music, GEMA and STIM’s multi-territory online rights, as well as some of the leading independent music publishers and offers options for other rights holders to join the same Core licence. 

New and enhanced ICE is the world's first integrated licensing and processing hub, offering state-of-the-art services to support over 290,000 rightsholders and multi-territory digital music companies.

The music industry has been transformed by the evolution of the digital market and the birth of cross-border music services. Following the European Commission’s recommendation in 2005, rightsholders have been able to withdraw their online rights from collecting societies to license them on a multi-territorial basis through the collective management organisation of their choice.

While this initiative - known as the ‘Option 3’ market – has enabled the development of a single European market in digital music services, it resulted initially in a fragmentation of repertoires and difficulties in processing due to different collective management organisations working off separate copyright databases, which led to delays in payment, inaccurate invoices and disputed claims.

The new hub reduces these problems by bringing repertoires together, enabling licensees to obtain one licence for those repertoires, ensuring that the works are recorded on a single, authoritative database.

ICE offers a complete and flexible suite of services:

  • State of the art data processing and matching
  • Authoritative copyright and audio-visual database
  • Business-enhancing services - invoicing, legal support and business intelligence;
  • Consolidated licensing of PRS for Music, GEMA and STIM’s multi-territory online rights and options for other rights holders to join the same Core licence, or to operate separate solutions, such as Solar and ARESA.

ICE will cover multi-territory licensing in Europe and beyond.

ICE is for music rightsholders and digital service providers (DSPs).

DSP customers will obtain a single, consolidated multi-territory licence for Europe for PRS for Music, STIM and GEMA and other repertoires to be represented by ICE in the future. ICE will make it simpler for DSPs to obtain multi-territory online licences. In addition to having one licence, they will receive one invoice for PRS for Music, STIM and GEMA repertoire, instead of three. That invoice will be produced from one data source and because of that it will eliminate invoice disputes that would arise due to using different copyright pictures.

Publishers and additional collection societies will be welcomed as ICE customers and can select options from a flexible suite of services. 

The suite is flexible to meet the changing and particular needs of different customers, and this choice will enable the widest cross section of customers to benefit.

The aggregated repertoires will be processed and matched on one system, whereas in the past processes were duplicated across societies. Customers will benefit from the increased speed and efficiencies enabled by the increased processing power of new systems and increased economies of scale.

The doors of ICE are open to all DSPs operating on a multi-territory basis, and all publishers and collection societies.

PRS for Music, STIM and GEMA will continue to license single territory digital music services on a national basis.

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