Music Publishing Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2023 - 2028)

The Music Publishing Market is Segmented by Royalties (Performance, Synchronization, Digital Revenue, and Physical Revenue), and Geography.

Music Publishing Industry Overview

Music Publishing Market
Study Period: 2018 - 2028
Fastest Growing Market: Latin America
Largest Market: North America
CAGR: 7.5 %

Major Players


*Disclaimer: Major Players sorted in no particular order


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Music Publishing Market Analysis

The Music Publishing market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.5% over the forecast period. Wearable and wireless technology are trending solutions in the music publishing market. Such devices offer movability and are important in concerts and live performances. Most of the vendors in the music industry partner with value chain enablers to have easy access to and reach the consumer base, which enables listening of music through these mediums and creates a significant user base.

  • The global music publishing market is growing in direct proportion to the increasing number of artists and live performances. Furthermore, the growth of the media and entertainment industries is the primary driver of the music publishing market.
  • Music publishing entails acquiring and licensing rights to musical compositions from songwriters, composers, or other rights holders. It has been discovered that most music publishing revenues are derived from five primary royalty sources: mechanical, performance, synchronization, digital, and other. Other responsibilities of music publishing include acquiring songs, administering copyrights, and protecting copyrights.
  • Music publishing involves recording, merchandising, publishing, and distributing musical content. Music publishing is a contract between songwriters, singers, and publishing houses to publish the market's songs or albums.​
  • The music publishers are the vital intermediaries between the songwriters and the recording companies. The music publisher requires the song's copyright and a fee to publish the musical content, commonly known as royalty.
  • Physical music sales have declined due to the popularity of music streaming services such as Spotify and Pandora. However, the market is expanding due to an increasing number of artists globally and the most recent technological advancements in music. Music publishers are in high demand because many artists and musicians require the personalized service provided by music publishers to support them handle their music, copyrights, and other assets. Furthermore, as consumers have shifted to digital platforms, the media industry has performed well.
  • While technology undoubtedly drives growth, it no longer operates against or adjacent to the music industry. It is a part of the industry and is being enhanced and harnessed by record companies. However, piracy and unethical downloads, using proxy sites, are a few factors that hinder the market's growth.
  • COVID-19 had a significant impact on the music and arts industries. Numerous music events, including festivals, concert tours, and award shows, have been canceled or postponed. Some composers and musicians could take advantage of the opportunity to create new works; however, there were unintended consequences for the many people who helped performers. Several record releases were pushed back.

Music Publishing Industry Segments

In the music industry, a music publisher or publishing company is responsible for ensuring that the songwriters and composers receive payment when their compositions are used commercially. A songwriter or composer assigns the copyright of their composition to a publishing company through an agreement called a publishing contract. In return, the company licenses the compositions, helps monitor where the compositions are used, collects royalties, and distributes them to the composers. They also secure commissions for the music and promote existing compositions to recording artists, films, and television.

The Music Publishing Market is Segmented by Royalty (Performance, Synchronization, Digital Revenue, and Physical Revenue) and Geography.

By Royalties
Digital Revenue
Physical Revenue
By Geography
North America
Latin America
Middle East & Africa

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Music Publishing Market Trends

This section covers the major market trends shaping the Music Publishing Market according to our research experts:

Digital Revenue has the Largest Growth in the Market

  • The music industry began its streaming-fueled recovery a few years ago, and the songwriting and publishing communities have been opposing not only the uneven payment structure of streaming, which sees recorded-music rights holders being paid three times what publishing is paid, and the imbalanced power and payment structures of the music industry.
  • Music publisher companies are primarily involved in acquiring and registering copyrights for musical compositions under the law and publicizing and authorizing the use of these compositions in recordings, radio, television, motion pictures, live performances, print, or other media. Companies in this industry represent songwriters' or other musical composition owners' interests in generating revenue by utilizing such works, typically through licensing agreements. These organizations may own the copyright or act as administrators on their behalf. Music book and sheet music publishers are included in this industry.
  • According to RIAA, streaming includes a variety of formats, such as paid subscriptions, ad-supported music streaming services, digital and personalized radio, and licenses for music on Facebook and digital fitness apps. The release includes US TikTok music revenues, leveraging labels' innovative work to license new apps, services, and formats. These revenues increased by 24% in 2021 to a total of USD 12.4 billion, accounting for 83% of total revenues – a similar level to 2020.
  • The music industry is not the only one to embrace streaming's progress. It has driven it proactively. The expansion of streaming is simply one part of a company that has forged partnerships with the biggest and most progressive tech businesses and is committed to maximizing the potential presented by technological advancements.
  • Various developments are taking place in the studied market. For instance, In May 2022, LimeWire, a digital collectibles marketplace, announced that it had struck its first major music label partnership with Universal Music Group (UMG) and will collaborate on making digital music collectibles accessible to a wider audience.
  • According to Airnow, In June 2022, YouTube Music was the most-downloaded music and audio app in the Google Play Store worldwide. The streaming service witnessed over 9.42 million downloads from Android users. Shazam was the second-most popular music and an audio app, with approximately four million downloads from global users.
Music Publishing Market

North America Accounts for Significant Share in the Market

  • With regard to music publishing, North America is one of the fastest-growing regions in terms of revenue. North American music publishers are gaining momentum with sheet music, adding more revenue. The United States contributed the highest share of the global music publishing market. The growth is driven by numerous independent and traditional music publishing houses in the country, offering the maximum opportunity for artists to showcase their talent.
  • The region witnessed several partnerships. The Atlas Music Group has made a global administration and marketing deal with Memory Lane Music Group. Nashville music industry veteran Jody Williams launched Jody Williams Songs, a joint publishing venture with Warner Chappell Music Nashville.​
  • In addition, the growing trend of music festivals in the United States is expected to further influence revenues from public performance licenses. Currently, there are about 800 music festivals in the United States.​
  • The market in the United States is highly competitive, with both small and large music publishing houses present. This puts publishing houses under pressure to increase the number of albums they release yearly without sacrificing quality. The country is also shifting consumer preferences away from physical and digital sales. This factor is expected to help the market grow.
  • In June 2022, SoundExchange, the music tech organization powering the future of music, announced that it is unifying its existing publisher services offering to develop an integrated global publisher services administration and licensing division, which will be called SX Works Global Publisher Services (SX Works).
  • In May 2022, Kakao Entertainment, Korea's provider of popular mobile content platforms, announced the merger of its North America subsidiaries Tapas Media and Radish Media, creating a digital publishing platform with more than 100,000 creators. The merger of these leading digital publishers creates a synergistic community of storytellers in the North American market while expanding Kakao Entertainment's global IP value chain.
Music Publishing Market

Music Publishing Market Competitor Analysis

The music publishing market is highly fragmented due to many local and regional players. Some of the major players in the market include Sony Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group, and Warner/Chappell Music Inc., among others.

  • October 2021 - Sony Music Publishing announced its partnership with music and film production studios in India, White Hill Music Pvt Ltd., to provide global publishing services for White Hill Music, including administration, synchronization, and catalog promotion. Sony Music Publishing will also deliver opportunities for international collaboration across its global network.
  • March 2021 - Sony Music Publishing announced the acquisition of the song catalog of the incomparable Paul Simon, one of the significant singer-songwriters of all time. The acquisition includes Paul Simon's classic songs spanning more than six decades.

Music Publishing Market Top Players

  1. Sony Music Publishing LLC ​

  2. Universal Music Publishing Group​

  3. Warner/Chappell Music Inc.

  4. Kobalt Music Group.

  5. BMG Rights Management​

*Disclaimer: Major Players sorted in no particular order

Music Publishing Market - Market Concentration.png

Music Publishing Market Recent Developments

  • May 2022 - Sony Music Publishing UK announced the signing of breakout singer-songwriter Kal Lavelle to a global publishing agreement. Irish-born singer-songwriter Kal Lavelle has quickly become one of today's most promising hitmakers, thanks to her work as a collaborator with Ed Sheeran.
  • Feb 2022 - Universal Music Group (UMG), a music-based entertainment company, announced the acquisition of the entirety of Neil Diamond's historic song catalog through Universal Music Publishing Group (UMPG). This comprehensive global agreement unifies Diamond's recorded music and publishing in its new permanent home at Universal Music Group.
  • February 2022 - Influence Media Partners ("Influence Media") has announced a partnership with funds and accounts managed by BlackRock Alternative Investors ("BlackRock") and Warner Music Group ("WMG") to build a music rights platform that will fund and manage premier compositions from some of music's most influential creators.

Music Publishing Market Report - Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions and Market Definition

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study


    1. 2.1 Research Framework

    2. 2.2 Secondary Research

    3. 2.3 Primary Research

    4. 2.4 Data Triangulation and Insight Generation



    1. 4.1 Market Overview

    2. 4.2 Industry Attractiveness - Porter's Five Forces Analysis

      1. 4.2.1 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      2. 4.2.2 Bargaining Power of Buyers

      3. 4.2.3 Threat of New Entrants

      4. 4.2.4 Threat of Substitutes

      5. 4.2.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry

    3. 4.3 Assessment of Impact of COVID-19 on the Market

    4. 4.4 Industry Value Chain Analysis

    5. 4.5 Publishing Functions

      1. 4.5.1 Acquiring Songs

      2. 4.5.2 Administering Copyrights

      3. 4.5.3 Other Functions


    1. 5.1 Market Drivers

      1. 5.1.1 Growing Popularity of Music Streaming Services

      2. 5.1.2 Increasing Live Concerts and Performances

      3. 5.1.3 Growing Adoption of Digital Music5.2 Market Restraint

    2. 5.2 Market Restraints

      1. 5.2.1 Privacy Issues

      2. 5.2.2 Decline in Physical Volume Sales


    1. 6.1 By Royalties

      1. 6.1.1 Performance

      2. 6.1.2 Synchronization

      3. 6.1.3 Digital Revenue

      4. 6.1.4 Physical Revenue

    2. 6.2 By Geography

      1. 6.2.1 North America

      2. 6.2.2 Europe

      3. 6.2.3 Asia-Pacific

      4. 6.2.4 Latin America

      5. 6.2.5 Middle East & Africa


    1. 7.1 Company Profiles

      1. 7.1.1 Sony Music Publishing LLC

      2. 7.1.2 Universal Music Publishing Group

      3. 7.1.3 Warner/Chappell Music Inc.

      4. 7.1.4 Kobalt Music Group.

      5. 7.1.5 BMG Rights Management

      6. 7.1.6 Round Hill Music

      7. 7.1.7 Pulse Recordings Inc.

      8. 7.1.8 Big Yellow Dog Music?.

      9. 7.1.9 Black River Entertainment

      10. 7.1.10 Reach Music Publishing

      11. 7.1.11 Disney Music Group

      12. 7.1.12 Big Deal Music

    2. *List Not Exhaustive


**Subject to Availability
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Music Publishing Market Research FAQs

The Music Publishing Market is studied from 2018 - 2028.

The Music Publishing Market is growing at a CAGR of 7.5% over the next 5 years.

Latin America is growing at the highest CAGR over 2018 - 2028.

North America holds highest share in 2021.

Sony Music Publishing LLC ​, Universal Music Publishing Group​, Warner/Chappell Music Inc., Kobalt Music Group., BMG Rights Management​ are the major companies operating in Music Publishing Market.

Music Publishing Industry Reports

In-depth industry statistics and market share insights of the Music Publishing sector for 2020, 2021, and 2022. The Music Publishing research report provides a comprehensive outlook of the market size and an industry growth forecast for 2023 to 2028. Available to download is a free sample file of the Music Publishing report PDF.

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