Norwegian music industry’s export facilitator and promotional organisation.

Streaming fuels growth on home market

By Carl Kristian Johansen

Streaming services continue to fuel growing music sales on Norway’s domestic market.

The 2013 sales figures from the IFPI Norway tell a tale of a steadily growing domestic market. 2013 saw recorded music generating a turnover of 603 mNOK, an increase of 11% compared to 2012 when sale of recorded music amounted to 545 mNOK.

The main driver behind this substantial growth is, according to IFPI, the steady development of streaming services on the Norwegian market. Income generated from streaming services such as Wimp, Spotify and Beat has increased 60% from 246 mNOK in 2012 to NOK 394 mNOK in 2013, resulting in streaming now holds a 65% stake of the total Norwegian music market.

Total digital sales figures (including downloads and streaming) increased with 40%, from 335 mNOK in 2012 to 468 mNOK in 2013. This leaves Norway as one of the leading countries when it comes to digital consumption of music on a global scale.

Says IFPI Norway’s Managing Director Marte Thorsby in a press statement: – We are very positive to this change and we will work enthusiastically to ensure continued development in the years ahead. We’re working on increasing the use of streaming services through all age segments, with particular focus on the 40+. We’ve seen a decline in the consumption of Norwegian music in the transition from a physical to a digital market, and this is a trend the industry wants to turn. We believe that a greater age-related prevalence in the use of streaming services will contribute positively to the Norwegian repertoire. In addition, we are focusing on ensuring the transparency and the understanding of the new business models, and thereby ensure a common understanding that we’re facing a new positive reality – for Norwegian consumers, Norwegian record companies and Norwegian artists.

– The music industry is constantly changing. Where we previously saw a steady decline in the overall music market, the trends are now reversed, says IFPI’s Marte Thorsby: – Through the past two years the total music market has experienced growth – alone due to growth in the digital market. Music consumption from 2008 to 2013 has gone through major changes. We have moved from traditional music purchases such as CD and LP, to using digital music services including iTunes, Wimp, Spotify and Beat.

In 2012 digital sales surpassed physical sales for the first time on the Norwegian music market. Digital sales accounted for 61,4% – 335 mNOK – compared to 9,3% – 57 mNOK in 2008. In 2013 the sale of digital music has increased to NOK 468 mNOK – an increase of 40% from 2012.

The IPFI sales figures show that digital music sales are in continuous growth. In 2008 the digital sales (both downloads and streaming) accounted for 9,3% of the total music sales. In 2013 the digital sales accounted for 77,6% of the total music sales in Norway. Norway is, together with the rest of the Nordic countries, in a unique position regarding digital development. No other countries in the world has achieved similar digital shares.

IFPI Norway has a positive outlook for the domestic market in the coming years: – We believe in continued growth in 2014, says IFPI’s Thorsby. – Several streaming services are well established, and we experience that other streaming services also starts getting a foothold with the Norwegian music consumers. Further, the fact that the generation 40+ increases their use of streaming services leads to a belief in continued digital growth in 2014.