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RIAA: Overall Retail Music Revenue Up By 8.1 For The First Half Of 2016

LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess) — New research published by the Recording Industry Association of America revealed 2016 is on track to be the first healthy year for the recorded music industry in more than a decade.

According to research published by the RIAA's Joshua P. Friedlander, the RIAAs streaming music revenues in the first half of 2016 totaled $1.6 billion, up 57% year-over-year, and accounted for 47% of industry revenues compared with 32% in the same period in 2015.

Paid subscriptions experienced strong growth during the first half of the year as well. The entrance of new services like Apple Music and TIDAL, and growth from services like Spotify Premium, helped both revenues and the number of paid subscriptions more than double versus the prior year. First half revenues from subscription music streaming services surpassed $1 billion for the first time, growing 112% to $1.01 billion, the RIAA said.

Subscriptions alone accounted for 30% of industry revenues for the first half of 2016, and the number of paid subscriptions grew 101% to average 18.3 million for the same period. The revenue growth from subscriptions alone more makes up for declines both physical and digital downloads.

Physical continued its slow but steady decline, with albums drooping by 6% by value for the first half of the year, but still accounting for 31% of physical shipments by value. Synchronization royalties were $100 million for the first half of the year, virtually flat versus the first half of 2015.

Digital downloads also slid for the first half of 2016, down by 17% to $1 billion when measured against the same span in 2015.

"These first half 2016 results illustrate the emergence of paid subscriptions as a primary revenue driver for the United States music industry. For the first time, paid subscriptions were virtually on-par with paid downloads as the biggest single format revenue source. Streaming became the overall largest revenue contributor by a wide margin," Friedlander said. – Staff Writers