Sub-Sahara Africa Music Revenues Grew 9.6% in 2021 – Reports IFPI Global

The recorded music market in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) grew by 9.6% in 2021 according to IFPI Global, the organisation that represents the recorded music industry worldwide. Figures released today in IFPI’s Global Music Report break out recorded music revenues in the SSA region for the first time. They show that growth was driven by streaming revenues which was up 20.1%.

Commenting on developments in the region, IFPI’s SSA Regional Director, Angela Ndambuki, said:

“I can attest to the fact that investment by record companies in the Sub-Saharan Africa music scene has created opportunities in the music industry, both regionally and on a global scale.  

“We are working to ensure that we have a conducive policy environment necessary for supporting and driving sustainable and long-term growth of the recorded music business within the region.”

The IFPI Global Music Report details how record companies are working to drive this continuing growth for the broader music ecosystem. With local teams and expertise located around the globe, they invested in local artists and genres and are supporting their development across their markets and beyond. In high-potential growth markets across Asia, Latin America and Africa, as well as more mature markets like Europe and North America, labels are putting down deep roots and helping to foster the continued advancement of vibrant and diverse local music ecosystems. 

Speaking at the IFPI Global Music Report launch, Temi Adeniji, Managing Director of Warner Music South Africa and SVP, Strategy, Sub-Saharan Africa, explained: “[This is] a transformative moment for the continent, and more importantly for creators from the continent.

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“But I think that obfuscates an important point: we have to look at the growth in the Sub-Saharan region from a bifurcated perspective… growth externally, but also growth on the ground. It’s important for us to look at this market holistically, as opposed to just looking at this amazing story [of music] coming out of the continent.

“It’s important for us to know that there is also a lot of work to be done. It’s much more than Afrobeats: there are so many genres we can take a look at, that have the potential to do exactly what Afrobeats has done.”

IFPI Chief Executive Frances Moore, commented on the report: “Around the world, record companies are engaging at a very local level, to support music cultures and bring on the development of emerging music ecosystems – championing local music and creating the opportunities for it to reach a global audience. As more markets mature, they join with and contribute to the rich, globally interconnected music world.

“Consequently, today’s music market is the most competitive in memory.  Fans are enjoying more music than ever and in so many different and new ways.  This creates enormous opportunities for artists. Those who choose to partner with a record company, do so to benefit from the support of agile, highly responsive global teams of experts dedicated to helping them achieve creative and commercial success and build their long-term careers. 

“As technologies and the online environment continue to evolve and expand, so too do the creative opportunities to share music experiences.  From the metaverse, to in-game content, record companies have invested in the people and the technologies to deliver new, highly interactive experiences – adding to the evolving ways for artists to make connections with their fans.”

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Growth in other world regions

Recorded music revenues grew in every region around the world in 2021, including:

  • 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 saw growth of 31.2% – one of the highest growth rates globally. Streaming accounted for 85.9% of the market, one of the highest proportions in any region.
  • Middle East and North Africa – split out as a separate region in the Global Music Report for the first time – experienced growth of 35.0%; the fastest regional growth rate globally. Streaming was a particularly strong driver in the region, with a 95.3% share of the market.
  • The US & Canada region grew by 22.0% in 2021, outpacing the global growth rate. The USmarket alone grew by 22.6% and Canadian recorded music revenues grew by 12.6%.

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

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Odipo Riaga
Managing Editor at KachTech Media
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