Spanish authors society SGAE posted a 35% year-over-year jump in revenue in 2022 to €349 million (approx. $366.98m at average annual exchange rates as per the IRS), the highest since 2007.
The society, responsible for the distribution and administration of authors’ rights, distributed €316.3 million ($332.59m) to its members and rights holders in the same period, reflecting a 27.4% jump compared to the previous year.
A total of 66,243 authors received payments for their creative works, indicating a substantial 74% increase from the previous year.
SGAE boasts a membership of more than 130,000 individuals, including 121,426 creative artists, 8,655 heirs, and 2,433 publishers. The organization says that it experienced a 23% increase in new members in 2022, with 60.9% of them being under 40 years old. Notably, 26.1% of the new members were women.
Most recently, in the first half of this year, the society reports to have distributed a total of €183.5 million in authors’ rights, up 18% from €154.8 million in the year-ago period.
“Our goal is to continue improving our results, especially in the digital realm, and to increase efficiency in the distribution of authors’ rights, with greater transparency towards our members.”
Cristina Perpiñá-Robert, SGAE
“Our goal is to continue improving our results, especially in the digital realm, and to increase efficiency in the distribution of authors’ rights, with greater transparency towards our members,” said SGAE’s general director, Cristina Perpiñá-Robert.
The Performing and Musical Arts category posted the highest growth across SGAE’s authors’ rights categories in 2022, experiencing an 88.8% jump.
This resulted in revenues of €40.1 million, with €9.9 million generated from Performing Arts alone, indicating a 40.7% increase compared to the previous year. Live Music revenue also soared by 112.7%, reaching €30.2 million.
Administered Authors’ rights witnessed a notable increase of 54.7%, generating €23.1 million. Digital Authors’ rights saw a growth of 48.7%, contributing to revenues of €46.4 million. The majority of the authors’ rights from music services, 97.3%, came from international services operating under a pan-European license, with 69.8% of these exploitations occurring in Spain.
Streaming music content remained the dominant trend, generating revenues of €28.9 million, a substantial 45.6% increase compared to the previous year. Video-on-demand (VOD) services also reported significant growth, with revenues of €16.3 million, reflecting a 63.6% increase from 2021.
Public Communication revenues saw a surge of 47.6%, reaching €58.1 million, while international revenues amounted to €27.9 million, representing a 25% increase. However, authors’ rights from Physical Media experienced a drop of 12.2%, generating €3.8 million less than in 2021.
Despite this, all other SGAE’s revenue categories witnessed growth, including Broadcasting and Cable income, which reached €132.8 million, up 18.7%, and Private Copying income, which totaled €15.3 million, reflecting a 17.6% surge.
In 2022, SGAE’s Fundación SGAE allocated €5.6 million to support the creative endeavors of its authors and publishers.
The funds were used to promote internationalization, encourage new musical creation, provide training initiatives, and conduct promotional activities. Additionally, 212 social grants, totaling over €650,000, were awarded to help members facing extreme vulnerability.
These developments follow an antitrust case against the society last year over its alleged “abuse of dominant position.”
The Spanish Competition Authority initiated the antitrust proceedings at the request of Unison, a Barcelona-based Independent Management Entity organization, which accused SGAE of infringing the European Union’s Competition Act by allegedly designing and applying blanket licenses in the television and radio markets, with market foreclosure effects.
In 2021, SGAE was readmitted to CISAC, the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers, following its temporary expulsion in May 2019 as a result of what CISAC called a “violation of the international confederation’s rules, discriminatory treatment of rights holders and irregularities in its royalties distributions.”
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