UK entertainment retail sales were up 6.4% in the first half of 2017 according to new stats published by the Entertainment Retailers Association yesterday, and music retail led the way with an 11.2% uplift year-on-year. ERA figures include monies generated by the music, video and gaming sectors, taking in both digital and physical products, and sales and subscription revenues. Unlike stats put out by the record industry, ERA’s music numbers also include the retailer or streaming platforms’ cut of any revenue, plus monies paid over to songwriters and music publishers, which are not generally included when the record industry reports digital income.
Overall UK entertainment retail sales generated £2.9 billion in the first half of 2017, up 6.4% on the £2.8 billion that came in during the first half of 2016. Music sales were up 11.2% year-on-year, gaming 8.4% and video sales just 1.2%, even though video products account for many of the best selling individual releases so far this year. Before all you music types get too smug, let’s not forget that overall, gaming accounts for just over 48% of the entertainment retail market, with DVDs and online video products responsible for about a third of revenues, and music just under 20%. But still, music retail is 11.2% up, woo!
Streaming subscriptions, of course, are fuelling that growth in music income, and digital products and services also now account for 75.4% of overall entertainment retail revenues. Though fans of the vinyl revival can sleep soundly tonight knowing that sales of old fashioned records continue to grow, up 35.7% in terms of units and 37.6% in terms or revenue so far this year.
Commenting on her organisation’s latest stats pack, ERA CEO Kim Bayley told reporters: “Entertainment has now seen over four years of continuous growth thanks to a combination of digital services pioneering new ways of consuming music, video and games, and physical retailers working hard to maximise sales of discs. To now deliver another £180m worth of sales in the first half of 2017 is really extraordinary”.