‘Big Three’ Record Labels Make Over $1.5 Bn From Streaming in 2018

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As expected, the business of streaming music keeps getting bigger year after year.

According to a report by Music Business Worldwide, the three major music labels generated over $1.5 billion more from streaming services last year (2018) than they did the previous year (2017)

The report states that in 2018, the three major record companies generated an average of $19 million each day from streaming services. This amounts to just under $800,000 per hour. The three record labels, according to Music Business Worldwide, are Universal, Sony and Warner Bros.

These companies, collectively called the ‘Big Three’, made over $6.93 billion from streaming services last year, according to investor filings from UMG parent Vivendi, Sony Music parent Sony Corp, and Warner Music Group. This figure was up by over $1.6 billion on the $5.3 billion the ‘Big Three’ generated from streaming services in 2017.

If all other music formats and commercial activities are taken into consideration, the three music companies – Universal Music Group, Sony Music and Warner Music Group – turned over $13.14 billion in profits last year; up by $1.04 billion when compared to the previous year.

The most successful record label last year was Universal. According to Music Business Worldwide, Universal’s annual streaming revenues jumped by 39% in 2018 to top $3 billion for the first time. In 2017, Universal’s annual streaming revenues had grown by 35%. Warner Music Group came in a close second bouncing by $396 million in revenues from streaming. Warner pulled in $1.44 billion from streaming in 2017, and $1.83 billion in 2018. Sony Music, on the other hand, saw annual streaming revenues grow by $368 million last year. It made more than $2 billion from music streaming in 2018.

Universal’s biggest selling artists of 2018 included Drake, Post Malone, The Beatles, and XXXTentacion.

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