Recent figures show France could have a streaming market as big as that of the UK.
When it comes to streaming markets, France was in 2014, according to Ifpi, the 5th biggest in the world, behind the US, the UK, South Korea and Sweden.
However, a closer look at 2015 figures show French audience stream as much as that of the UK, but the French market generates less revenues because of the so-called value gap.
According to figures communicated by BPI and Snep, its French counterpart, surprisingly, slightly the same number of streams was registered in both countries in 2015: 54 billion in the UK, 50 billion in France.
It is the breakdown of such a figure that differs and proves very harmful to the French music business.
Even though the debate about Spotify and how much it pays or should pay music rights-holders and record labels is still making headlines, the music business reckons there is another red-hot issue with video streaming platforms that generate abnormally low revenues to the music industry.
And this is where the balance isn’t getting right.
In 2015, the UK’s 53.7 billion streams consisted in a 50 – 50 split between audio and video.
In a recent statement, Geoff Taylor, BPI chief executive, pointed out that both components had grown massively in 2015 but in the same time that audio streaming growth had generated 70% increase in revenues, video streaming had doubled but resulted in a virtually nill increase in revenues.
In France, the breakdown between audio and video streams was an unbalanced 35% – 65% split.
And while the audio segment generated 93.6 million euros in gross value, the video segment yielded a ridiculous 10.4 million euros contribution, that is only 10% of the French streaming market !
Therefore, in 2015, an audio stream generated in France an average 0.0052 euro revenue, 17 times greater than the average revenue of a video stream.
If video had been aligned on audio, France’s streaming market would have weighed 260 million euros, 2.6 times what it really was.
And France and the UK would have had comparable size streaming markets !
Updates with Q1 ’16 figures report continuous and massive growth of audio streams in both countries, showing they continue on competing well.
In the UK, new heights have been reached recently with Drake’s ‘One Dance’ rocketing at a record 9- million streams in a single week.
In France, Snep reported a staggering 70% increase in Q1 period-to-period total audio streams, at 6.1 billion. Even though the record for most streams in a week has been hovering at 2m+ for some time, giving the impression of a stalled growth, more and more songs have been streaming beyond the 1 million barrier in the same week, proving this impression is clearly wrong. Three weeks ago, the top 14 streaming songs were all above that mark for the first time ever.
All figures courtesy of The Official Charts Company, Snep and chartsinfrance.com