July 3, 2020
Brazil, the largest country in South America, has been experiencing a resurgence in their music industry. In 2018, both IFPI and CISAC reported that Brazil was the 10th largest for music collections in the world. Again in 2019, IFPI ranked Brazil as 10th largest for music revenue (IFPI, 2020 & CISAC, 2019). Following a decade-long battle with piracy and sales decline, Brazil is now seeing massive growth fueled by rising popularity in digital music and streaming (Brazil.gov.br). In 2018, IFPI reported revenues of $298.8 million for the country, 15.4% growth on the previous year.
Of this revenue, 70% came from streaming (Music Business Worldwide, 2019). This is a statistic that is resonating across Latin America where ¾ of revenues are from streaming (IFPI, 2019). The growth of streaming has been staggering, where in just 4 years since 2014 streaming revenues grew by $177.3 million. In 2014 revenues from streaming were 30.5 million to 207.8 million in 2018. Of this streaming growth, it is Spotify the market leader (Music Business Worldwide, 2019).
In a 2019 Billboard article, industry experts weighed in on the growth of music revenues in the region. The consumer shift from physical to streaming was driven by the consumer themselves. Music labels had to adapt to the change, said Paulo Junqeiro of Sony Music Brazil who took over the Brazil operation in 2015. In 2015 60% of Sony’s sales in the region were physical, while in 2019 it accounted for less than 1% (Billboard, 2019).
Prior to the increase in streaming, piracy was an issue in Brazil. The President of the National Council to Combat Piracy, Luciano Timm, part of the Brazilian Government shared that this issue was prevalent due to the lack of “perception of the effort of the artist or owner of intellectual property” (Brazil.Gov.Br). However, in recent years Music Rights organisations such as UBC have signed agreements with media platforms such as Amazon (CISAC 2019).
Local music has always been popular in Brazil, with genres such as Bossa Nova having massive appeal (Brazil.gov.br). However new local genres are emerging. The internet has sparked popularity and provided access to local music which has also contributed to growing revenues. Various sources have discussed the widespread popularity of genres such as Urban Funk and Sertenejo which grew due to access via YouTube, the most popular social media platform in Brazil. In a recent digital media report by Pag Media, YouTube was by 95% of the respondents with internet access (Pag Brazil, 2019).
While superstar Brazillian artist Anitta has had local and international success, of the top 10 most streamed songs in 2017 5 were from the Sertenejo genre. Sony Music’s Junqeiro shared that the label has become the leading label in the country due to their effort to build a strong repertoire of local artists (Billboard, 2019).
For Brazillian consumers, Spotify is the most popular streaming platform. However, Amazon has launched to provide a sizable rival. (Music Business Worldwide, 2019). Brazilian internet users are high users with Pag Media reporting that Brazilians listen to music streaming for on average 1 hour 19 minutes per day (PagMedia, 2019).
IFPI shared that Latin America had the highest rate of growth globally at 18.9% (IFPI, 2020). Brazil is a big contributor to this growth. With more global streaming platforms with their eyes set on Brazil, this is a sector that is going to continue to grow.
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