Live events sector
Following lengthy negotiations which involved court action from two of Germany’s live entertainment business associations, a new concert tariff rate has been agreed between representatives of the country’s live music sector (BDV and VDKD, which represent the majority of Germany’s concert promoters) and performance royalty collection organisation GEMA.
Collected on behalf of songwriters and music publishers, the rate will now be calculated on a net basis of ticket sales, instead of gross, with other services including camping fees at festivals and sponsoring income taken into account.
The new rate will be 5.75% of net receipts for events under 2,000 people (it is currently 5% on gross receipts), 7.6% for 2,000–15,000-capacity shows (currently 7.2%) and 8% for events with a capacity of 15,000+ (currently 7.65%).
The German PRO collected €1.02bn in royalty payments in 2016, including €371.1m in public performance fees, in its most successful financial year to date. GEMA has faced increasing criticism in recent years, and artists and event-organisers have demanded a revision of GEMA’s regulations with respect to better transparency, adjusted payment methods and other critical points. In the live sector, the large discounts offered to some promoters have attracted criticism some of the societies own songwriter members and has been blamed as one of the causes of some members moving to ‘direct licence’ their performing right in the live sector.
IQ Magazine commented that in the UK, a similarly long period of negotiations is approaching its end, as PRS for Music moves towards replacing the current flat rate of 3% on gross box-office receipts.