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Music royalty society to pay out record £174m amid outbreak

PRS For Music’s chief executive said she hoped the money would ‘ease the burden’ during the coronavirus pandemic.

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PRS For Music prioritised the processing of live performance royalties (Aaron Chown/PA)

PRS For Music prioritised the processing of live performance royalties (Aaron Chown/PA)

PRS For Music prioritised the processing of live performance royalties (Aaron Chown/PA)

Royalty collection society PRS For Music will pay out a record £174 million to its members in April.

The body, which represents more than 145,500 songwriters, composers and music publishers, pays out royalties when their music is streamed, downloaded, broadcast or played in public.

Its latest payment is a 15% year-on-year increase on April last year.

PRS For Music’s chief executive Andrea C Martin said she hoped the money would “ease the burden” during the coronavirus pandemic, which has shuttered music venues and halted tours across the world.

She said: “In these unprecedented times, it is incredibly important that we are distributing accurate and timely royalties to all of our members, from every revenue stream, as quickly as possible.

“We hope that this record April PRS distribution, alongside our recently announced PRS emergency relief fund, will help ease the burden felt by music creators due to coronavirus.

“The entire PRS team is working hard to ensure that through this period of significant disruption – especially to live music and UK businesses – we do everything we can to minimise the risk to future distributions.”

To support members impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, PRS For Music prioritised the processing of live performance royalties, reducing the average turnaround to three months.

Alongside live royalties, £21.4 million was also distributed to members from music use in shops, cafes, restaurants, fitness classes, cinemas and other spaces.

To reduce the time between an artist’s song being streamed and payment, PRS For Music increased the online royalty processing of major digital service providers.

Alongside the PRS Members’ Fund and PRS Foundation, PRS For Music has launched an emergency relief fund, allocating grants of up to £1,000 to those affected by the outbreak.

Members can check their royalty payment amounts online or via the PRS app now, with money reaching accounts on April 15.

PA