Surprise boom for Swedish music industry
Published: 13 Jul 2012 10:53 GMT+02:00
Updated: 13 Jul 2012 10:53 GMT+02:00
The Swedish music industry has seen an increase in sales in the first half of 2012, with digital services like Spotify to thank for the boost, new figures show.
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Music sales rose by 30 percent in the first half this year compared to the corresponding period in 2011, according to statistics from the Swedish Recording Industry Association (Grammofonleverantörernas förening - GLF).
Spotify and similar digital music services stood for a bulk of the increase, but the decline in CD-sales has also levelled out.
A total of 4.4 million CDs were sold in Sweden in the first six months of 2012, a decrease of just one percent on last year's sales.
Overall, music sales generated a total of 446 million kronor ($63.5 million), according figures from GLF.
Streaming services like Spotify stood for 253 million kronor ($36 million) of the sales, an increase of 79 percent.
Ludwig Werner, CEO of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (Ifpi), was surprised by the boom.
"It is of course very positive," he told the TT news agency.
"In our business, we have not exactly been spoiled with increases in sales in the past ten years."
The figures lend further justification to previous claims that Spotify has been helped resurrect the Swedish record industry.
In early 2012, digital music sales for the first time stood for more than half of the record industry's incomes.
While CD sales had fallen, proceeds from Spotify sales surged.
However, illegal file-sharing is also on the rise, especially among young people, despite stringent new laws designed to clamp down on the practice.
According to a survey conducted by the Lund University in January 2012, 61 percent of 15- to 25-year-olds in Sweden share music and other content online.
Rdio is seen as a Spotify rival and is also available in the US, UK, Canada, Brazil, France, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Spain and Portugal.
The service offers “millions of songs with no ads”.