Decrease in Licensing Revenue of 4.2% to €36.5m in 2011;

  • 566 new members;
  • Operating Expenses reduced by a further 0.6% representing a 16% (circa €1m) decrease over 4 years;
  • Overseas revenue increased by 13% to €3.7m;
  • Distributions (incl. cable) paid in 2011 amounted to €37.7m.

20th June 2012 – The Irish Music Rights Organisation (IMRO) has today reported that its total licensing revenue in 2011 amounted to €36.5 million, an anticipated decrease of 4% on the previous year, reflecting the continuing difficult economic trading environment for all licensees, most particularly in discretionary spending sectors such as pubs, hotels, restaurants and cinema. Broadcast and concert revenue however, remained stable, while overseas revenue increased substantially.

Commenting on the results, Victor Finn, IMRO CEO, said, “Despite the harsh economic environment, IMRO performed well in 2011. While revenues were down 4% below 2010 levels, this was expected and can be attributed to the continued difficulties faced by the hospitality, broadcasting and live music sectors. Costs for the year were tightly controlled, with a 0.6% saving achieved from 2010. Over the past four years, we have managed to reduce our overheads by a total of just under €1m.”

Mr Finn continued, “IMRO remains committed to representing a collective voice for music creators in a challenging economic environment. We have and will continue to invest in our IT systems in order to further drive revenues. We have delivered many improvements in our services for members; moving member work registrations and distribution statements online. The majority of members are now using the members online portal to manage their membership transactions with IMRO. This is delivering both savings and enhanced information flow for all. The recent launch of a new and improved IMRO website continues our investment in online tools for members and licensees.”

The launch of IMRO’s secure member portal with enhanced facilities includes; the ability to access current repertoire details, register works directly online, view distribution statements, and also search and claim royalties. The launch of the new portal also eliminates the need for paper and allows members to interact with IMRO on a 24hr basis.

Keith Donald, IMRO Chairman also commented, “While the Irish business environment remains difficult, IMRO has managed to deliver satisfactory results for 2011. These reflect the proactive strategies the organisation has taken in the areas of cost containment, increased market penetration and continued investment in IT systems.”

Mr Donald added, “The  ongoing economic downturn continues to pose challenges for IMRO. In 2012 our focus will be to maintain 2011 revenue levels, continue a review of our licensing schemes, grow online revenue, enforce rights on behalf of our members via an effective office based and on-the-ground presence, and via a rigorous defence of member’s copyrights. All of this will be done in the most cost effective and efficient manner possible.”

Commenting on the Copyright Review, Victor Finn, IMRO CEO said, “The statutory instrument giving copyright owners the right to take injunctive proceedings against third parties in the event that infringement acts are committed on their networks, was transposed into Irish law earlier this year by Minister Richard Bruton. We welcome this development. The future for music is in broadcast, online, on mobile and cloud platforms, all of which offer growth prospects.”

Mr. Finn continued, “Growth will occur through partnerships collaboration between the creative community and technology companies, not by these sectors being pitted against one another. Respect and reward for innovation go hand-in-hand with copyright protection, promotion and enforcement. We will continue to advocate such a partnership approach on behalf of our members. We are currently engaging with the Copyright Review Committee and with Government to ensure a balanced set of measures is introduced. This will ensure that new enterprises in the off-line and online environments have easy access to our repertoire and that royalty fees paid for such use are fair and reasonable.”


 For Further Information:

 Keith Johnson
Director of Marketing & Membership
Irish Music Rights Organisation
Copyright House
Pembroke Row
Lower Baggot Street
Dublin 2

P: 353 1 6614844

E: ei.ormi@nosnhoj.htiek


Notes to Editors:


Overview of Licensing Revenue

Licensing revenue of €36.5m was achieved in 2011, a fall of 4.2% on 2010. This was split across four areas:

  • Broadcasting (excluding cable) & Online
  • Cable and Satellite;
  • Public Performance;
  • Overseas.


Broadcasting (excluding cable)

This comprises royalties from RTÉ, TG4, independent commercial radio and TV broadcasters.

Revenue from this industry sector, excluding cable, at €7.3m was in line with 2010.


Cable and Satellite

Cable and satellite revenue reflects the royalties payable for the cable retransmission of UK terrestrial

and satellite channels in Ireland. Revenue at €11.6m, was down on 2010 due to certain channels not

being carried by cable operators. The majority of this revenue is distributed to the cable rightsholders

involved in the rebroadcast of BBC, ITV, and Channel 4  programming  on cable networks, with the

remainder being distributed to IMRO members and affiliates.


Public Performance

Public performance revenue reflects royalties arising from the public performance of copyright music

in shops, bars, cinemas, hotels, offices, and at live concerts. At €13.5m, this figure fell by 9%

(€1.4m) when compared to 2010. The fall mainly reflected backdated revenue from the cinema sector

of almost €1m in 2010. In addition, lower levels of music usage and higher bad debts in all sectors

resulted in revenue falls. Concert revenue, however, remained stable.



Overseas revenue arises from the use of IMRO members‘ repertoire in other countries. In 2011

overseas revenue increased by 13% to €3.7m, reflecting a strong performance of the IMRO repertoire

overseas. This revenue comes to IMRO members via our overseas sister societies, with 35%

earned in the United Kingdom, a further 36% earned in other EU countries and 11% earned in the US.


About the Irish Music Rights Organisation (IMRO)

IMRO is a national organisation that administers the performing right in copyright music in Ireland on behalf of its members –  who are songwriters, composers and music publishers – and on behalf of the songwriters, composers and music publishers of the international overseas societies that are affiliated to it. IMRO does not represent the interests of record labels. Their interests in Ireland are administered by Phonographic Performance Ireland (PPI) and their representative trade body is The Irish Recorded Music Association (IRMA).   IMRO’s function is to collect and distribute royalties arising from the public performance of copyright works. IMRO is a not-for-profit organisation. 

Music users such as broadcasters, venues and businesses must pay for their use of copyright music by way of a blanket licence fee. IMRO collects these monies and distributes them to the songwriters, composers and music publishers who created the songs. The monies earned by copyright owners in this way are known as public performance royalties.

IMRO is also prominently involved in the sponsorship and promotion of music in Ireland. Every year it sponsors a large number of song contests, music festivals, seminars, workshops, research projects and showcase performances. Indeed, IMRO is now synonymous with helping to showcase emerging talent in Ireland.

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