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IFPI Releases 2021 Global Recorded Music Report

The global recorded music market grew by 18.5% in 2021, according to the IFPI Global Music Report 2022.

London, UK (April 1, 2022)—The global recorded music market grew by 18.5% in 2021, according to International Federation of the Phonographic Industry’s (IFPI) Global Music Report 2022, generating total revenues of $25.9 billion, driven by growth in paid subscription streaming.

The dominant revenue format globally, streaming (including both paid subscription and advertising-supported) grew by 24.3% to reach $16.9 billion. In 2021, streaming accounted for 65.0% of recorded music revenues, up from a 61.9% share in 2020.

Paid subscription streaming revenues increased by 21.9% to $12.3 billion. There were 523 million users of paid subscription accounts at the end of 2021.

In addition to streaming revenues, growth was supported by gains in other areas, including physical formats (+16.1%) and performance rights (+4.0%).

The top 10 most popular and best-selling global recording artists of 2021 were, in descending order, BTS, Taylor Swift, Adele, Drake, Ed Sheeran, The Weeknd, Billie Eilish, Justin Beiber, Seventeen and Olivia Rodrigo. Adele’s latest release, 30, topped the global album all-format, album sales and vinyl album charts for the year. The Weeknd’s “Save Your Tears” was the No. 1 global digital single.

The fastest regional growth rate globally was Middle East and North Africa — split out as a separate region in IFPI’s annual report for the first time — which expanded by 35.0%. Streaming was a particularly strong driver in the region, with a 95.3% share of the market.

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Sub-Saharan Africa, also split out for the first time in IFPI’s reporting, saw revenue growth of 9.6% in 2021, largely driven by streaming. Ad-supported was particularly strong in this region, with revenues from this format growing by 56.4%.

Asia grew by 16.1%, with its largest market, Japan, seeing growth of 9.3%. Excluding Japan, the region experienced a 24.6% climb in revenues. In a continuing trend, Asia also accounted for a significant share of the global physical revenues (49.6%).

Australasia experienced growth of 4.1%. Australia (+3.4%) remained a top 10 market globally and New Zealand saw a rise in streaming revenues push the overall market to growth of 8.2%.

Revenues in Europe, the second-largest recorded music region in the world, grew by 15.4%, a steep increase on the prior year’s growth rate of 3.2%. The region’s biggest markets all saw double digit percentage growth: UK (+13.2%), Germany (+12.6%) and France (+11.8%).

Latin America also saw one of the highest growth rates globally, rising 31.2%. Streaming accounted for 85.9% of the market, one of the highest proportions in any region.

The USA and Canada region grew by 22.0% in 2021, outpacing the global growth rate. The USA market alone grew by 22.6% and Canadian recorded music revenues grew by 12.6%.