The pandemic and its aftershocks have been felt across APRA’s activities. The organization has let go almost 20% of its staff in the quarter, which frees-up the burden of salaries, the largest part of its expenses.

In a breakdown of its revenue streams, APRA noted:
– Digital (including Spotify, YouTube, Facebook and Netflix). Net distributable revenue (NDR) increased by 27% compared to the same quarter last year. Digital makes up just over 50% of the total June quarter royalty distribution.

– Commercial TV. Royalties decreased by 20% compared to the same quarter last year, due largely to several factors: a recently revised commercial TV license scheme, a reduction in TV advertising revenue, and a “large reduction” in revenue from background music, played in retail, hotels, fitness and other venues which were shuttered during the period.

– Subscription TV: Royalty distributions are largely unchanged.

– Commercial Radio: Royalties declined by 57% versus the same quarter last year due to a pullback from advertising revenue and from background music licenses.

– Concerts/Events: A 24% decline in concert royalty payments compared to the same period last year.

– Cinema and Nightclubs: Royalty distribution from cinema reduced by 76% and nightclubs by 82%.

The results aren’t unexpected.

Last month, APRA AMCOS reported a downgraded financial year and a small decline in royalty distributions, due to the effects of COVID-19 and last summer’s bushfire season, with public performance income the hardest hit.

“With restrictions remaining on live music, concerts and touring,” reads a statement issued with publication of its Year In Review, “music royalties are expected to take a more substantial hit in 2020-21.”


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