Beggars Group recalibrates 50% streaming payment to artists and attacks YouTube
April 7th, 2014 by Eamonn Forde
At a time of immense obfuscation over streaming royalties and artist gripes about payments, Beggars Group was one of the few labels to make its rates public. It paid 50% to artists, but intoned that was a temporary measure until the streaming market hit a certain point. It appears that certain point has now been arrived at.
Speaking at the MusicTank The Artist Economics Of Streaming event in London tonight (7th April), Beggars’ head of digital Simon Wheeler explained where the label currently is. “In the last six months, the market has really rocketed,” he said of streaming, adding that it now accounts for around 40% of Beggars’ global digital income, far ahead (he believes) of the industry average here. “However, we have always been clear that if and when the streaming market grew to be a significant part of the business, as now is becoming the case, we would have to review that, since the economics of the investments a record label makes do not, in our experience, allow for the artist to be paid 50% of the net, let alone 50% of the gross, as we have been doing.”
What will that new rate be? Exact details are not being made public, but he hinted at what it could be. “It will be between a standard royalty [rate] and 50%,” he said. “And knowing [founder and chairman] Martin Mills, as I do, I am sure it will be more generous that most other deals out there […] We’ll aim to find the right balance between ensuring the best possible rate to our artists and continuing to provide our full range of global services and resources to our artists.”