We've reported the industry-shaking news that streaming now accounts for 75% of music industry revenue over the last year, while music downloads are increasingly dropping as a percentage of overall industry revenue. In the midst of industry doom-and-gloom, one bright spot has been the recently impervious fortunes of electronic music platform Beatport.
While music downloads have overall suffered significant declines, Beatport has achieved year-on-year track download revenue growth of 8%, including 7% growth in the US alone. Beatport CEO Robb McDaniels explains its current state:
“Beatport is very healthy and profitable and has been for some time now… There were obviously deep cuts to the organization coming out of the SFX bankruptcy. But Beatport really went back to focusing on its core products and customers – and that has been key to the growth since 2016.”
He identifies the main reason behind its success is the unique relationship of the DJ community to streaming and downloads:
“For most professional DJs today, downloading high-quality audio and taking on it on their [hard] drives to their shows is still their preferred way of doing the job… There’re a number of issues with streaming music into venues. Obviously, as a professional DJ, you can’t suffer from or deal with interruptions. And, in terms of the quality of the music, you have to have that CD quality – or .wav-quality – file for the bigger shows.”
60% of Beatport's annual visitors consider themselves DJs, and thus Beatport is looking into a variety of ways to diversify while staying true to their core business model. In the meantime, they remain a nearly singular bright spot in the otherwise questionable future of music downloads.