These past fifteen months have been the hardest era most people under 50 in the US have faced or will face in their lives. A global pandemic that shuttered businesses, left hundreds of thousands dead, hundreds of thousands more unemployed and plenty still struggling even now as the world begins to open up. While we collectively found alternative ways to keep afloat, there’s no denying that many industries were decimated, including the electronic music industry.
Every year, the International Music Summit (IMS) releases a report that features full and detailed data on the last year in the electronic music industry, including an overall industry valuation and highlighting key trends, providing analysis into the economic impact of the global pandemic on our sector.
Sadly, however predictably, after 10 years of sustained growth, the impact of the global pandemic has reset the industry to levels last recorded more than a decade ago, with the value falling by 54% to $3.4 billion in 2020.
Some sectors saw actual growth. The DJ Software and Hardware sector experienced record growth as the world found new ways to entertain itself during lockdown, with an estimated 23% increase year on year to $1.1 billion. The recorded music market grew by 7% from 2019 to 2020 to $22 billion, even though electronic music share declined in the US by 11% and the UK by 2%, lowering the global value of electronic music, relatively speaking.
The biggest hit to EDM’s value in 2020 was the loss of live shows. More than 200 music festivals were cancelled or postponed, resulting in hundreds and thousands of people out of work and $3.4 billion in value lost, down 78% year on year.
A huge rebound can be expected as the live industry finds safe routes to reopening and the demand for events is bigger than ever, with Skiddle data showing the value of festival tickets sold in March 2021 was more than the whole of 2020 combined, the value of festival tickets sold was up 3999% in March 2021 compared to the same period last year.
The global live music industry is expected to recover to 160%/45% growth in 2021/22.
Photo via Tim Buiting for DGTL