5 Things You Didn’t Know About SoundExchange

SoundExchange President & CEO Michael Huppe presents Pitbull with the SoundExchange Digital Radio Award which recognizes artists who have amassed more than one billion streams on digital radio

SoundExchange is the nonprofit organization at the center of digital music, developing solutions to benefit the entire music industry. We collect and distribute digital performance royalties on behalf of more than 130,000 recording artists and master rights owners accounts.

SoundExchange fights for royalty structures that recognize the vital role that the creators of music play for digital services. The Library of Congress has designated SoundExchange to administer the statutory licenses that allow digital music services including Pandora, SiriusXM and Music Choice – and 2,500 other digital music services – to play your music.

sxchg_logoHere are few more things about SoundExchange you may not know.

  1. 1. SoundExchange royalties account for 16% of the entire U.S. recorded music industry’s revenue

As streaming surpassed music downloads as the biggest source of revenue in the music industry, performance royalties also have increased.

In 2015, SoundExchange distributions of approximately $803 million represented 16 percent of the recorded music industry’s wholesale revenue – revenue to record labels and artists – which reached $4.95 billion last year, according to the RIAA’s data.

Streaming accounted for 34.3 percent of the recorded music industry market in 2015, while downloads accounted for 34 percent of the retail market. Streaming generated $2.4 billion in revenue in 2015, a 28.5 percent increase over 2014 revenue, when streaming revenue reached $1.86 billion.

  1. Online registration is fast and easy (and we can collect your international royalties)

You must register with us in order to receive royalties. That process is simple and keeps getting easier (especially now with our online registration).

Submitting an online registration does not immediately generate access to SoundExchange Direct, our online account management tool. Join codes and invitations are generated once we have completely processed your registration, and will be sent via email from a SoundExchange Account Manager. If you already have an existing account with SoundExchange, and have not received or have lost your invitation, please email accounts@soundexchange.com to request an invitation to join SoundExchange Direct.

Once you do have access to SoundExchange Direct, here are some of the benefits you’ll enjoy:

  • Detailed look at your most recent payments, including top recordings and top services
  • Access to past statements in summary and detail form
  • Ability to update account information including payment info, tax forms, direct deposit, membership and international mandate, repertoire and letters of direction
  • Ability to add guests to view your account information

Registration is different than membership. Membership is free and also comes with several benefits. You can reach us by phone at (800) 961-2091 Monday through Friday 9am-6pm ET, or by email at accounts@soundexchange.com.

  1. SoundExchange has paid out more than $4 billion in royalties to recording artists and rights owners to date

After a record-setting year in 2015, we began 2016 right where we left off – on pace for another successful year. On behalf of recording artists and rights owners, we distributed $403.4 million in payments in the first half of 2016.

  1. SX delivers business solutions to the music industry and provides unique value in the administration of direct deals

SoundExchange develops technology solutions to improve all aspects of royalty administration and ensure fast, accurate payments. We developed a matching algorithm that enables us to get more than 90 percent of royalties out the door in 45 days and 95 percent within 24 months, the fastest payout rate of any performance rights organization.

We opened our searchable database to the public. The International Standard Recording Codes search site provides a valuable resource to the music community because the lack of data or bad data remains a problem throughout the industry. Our ISRC Search Database benefits the entire music industry by providing instant access to SoundExchange’s extensive database of sound recording information.

We also administer direct deals. We deliver value in the administration of direct deals by:

  • Ensuring that artists get paid directly
  • Ensuring that money doesn’t fall through the cracks
  • Quickly identifying overlapping claims/rights
  • Eliminating overhead and duplication of labor
  1. SoundExchange’s Administrative Rate Remains Under 5%

SoundExchange had an administrative rate of 4.6% last year. Keeping SoundExchange organizationally lean, fiscally responsible and focused on the distribution of performance royalties allows us to keep our administrative rate so low.

We also have embraced innovation. In 2015 we completed development of the final modules of our royalty administration platform – rights management, repertoire matching, distribution processing, and a self-service licensee portal – and began to deploy them into operations. With these modules, SoundExchange has replaced every component of our former system with the latest technology and state-of-the-art processes designed for an industry newly-defined by streaming.