Indian Performing Right Society targets Rs 60 crore revenue from public performance, says CEO Rakesh Nigam

IPRS will earn overall revenues of over Rs 300 crores for the fiscal.

Mumbai: During the past two Covid infected years on-ground events took a severe hit. This had an extremely negative impact on the revenues generated from live events and public performance of music. However, with normalcy returning The Indian Performing Right Society (IPRS) CEO Rakesh Nigam is optimistic about generating revenue of Rs 60 crore from public performance for the current fiscal. The revenue generated will increase from fiscal 2019-2020 (pre-covid), which was Rs 52 crore. The overall revenues generated at IPRS from across verticals for the fiscal are pegged to be above Rs 300 crore.  

"IPRS has started engaging with a lot of people. We have taken a proactive stand with the users, who are also coming out of the pandemic. We will consider giving them discounts and ask them to pay for music.  People are now positive about taking licences. We have boosted our on-ground team to meet the growing requirement. We have adopted a 360-degree approach and are trying to motivate people to get licences to play music in public. We also try and give discounts to coerce them to take licences."

He adds that there is more advertising taking place on digital platforms like YouTube which will benefit the music industry. There is a revenue share and so there will be income growth. However for subscription-driven OTT platforms or music used for television, there won’t be an impact from ad revenue. The festive season has more of an impact on public performance and on anything that is driven by revenue share. "The festive season for us in public performance is a full six-month period. It starts in October and goes on till March. In the summer, things slow down and during the rainy season not much happens. Apart from this, in October corporate events, general events, parties, etc., all start taking place.

The mood today is very positive. We expect a growth in consumption, which was on a standstill for the past two years.  As malls have opened, footfalls in theatres have increased. Things are looking bullish across the country. Recently, malls had stopped using music to cut down on costs and save every penny. Now they are willing to spend money and take licences. They use music in the background to create the right ambience.," Nigam points out further.

"The fervour is across the country. Everyone is waiting to go out and break the shackles, be free and enjoy. So, retail sales are going up. Malls are quite positive. The mood picked up in August. The festive season is Diwali through Christmas." IPRS, he says, has started engaging with clients. They had asked for discounts in the previous two years which the IPRS had agreed to help during a very difficult period.

In terms of the growth in the number of artists and music publishers, the growth has been over 50 per cent, he says. "During the lockdown, we made everything digital. We made the online application process as smooth as possible. Only the signature on the statutory documents has to be done offline. We have also held digital seminars and campaigns to reach out to music creators and publishers to tell them that IPRS is a society to extend support. We also reached out to music authors and composers who felt the brunt of Covid. We gave financial support. This sent out a positive message that we are an organisation that does not just collect royalties. We also help when it is required. As a society, we help the less privileged members. We gave financial relief to a lot of members during the pandemic. As a result of all our initiatives to help and support we have also grown in numbers. From 4,000+ we are now a community of over 9000 songwriters, composers and music publishers from across the country. We have seen this growth in the past three years. During seminars, we focused on the fact of learning and earning. We educated people on the new things that are shaping the music industry and careers of those associated with it. How can they be at par with things happening around beyond music creation? What is happening on platforms like Youtube? What is metadata? And all that is relevant for them to reap the best benefits as a creator and publisher."

IPRS also aims to educate music users through our campaign that speaks about fair pay and fair play of music. #LicenseLiyakya? is the message. "Why not pay fairly for the usage of music? This encourages creativity. 90 per cent of people online listen to music. We are bullish. Why not ensure that you subscribe and pay for music? That is how we have come up with the campaign. If there is no music at your event, how will it sound? Please help us serve you better by paying for the music. This will encourage authors and composers to create better music for them." In terms of IPRS members, he said that they can play their role by letting copyright societies like IPRS know where their music is being played. "They also have to push to see that those places obtain a licence as that will only benefit the music creators and publishers."

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