Dear Songwriter, Composer and Publisher,
I hope that you and your loved ones are staying safe and well during these challenging times. We are glad to be able to deliver your royalties one week early again this quarter, as a small way to show our support for you, now and always.
I am pleased to share that despite the unprecedented impact of the global pandemic, BMI closed our fiscal year ending June 30, 2020, with historic revenues and royalty distributions. Thanks to the global popularity of your music, BMI generated revenues of $1.311 billion, a $28 million increase over last year, and distributed and administered $1.233 billion in royalties to our affiliates, $37 million more than last year. For the fifth consecutive year, these results represent the highest reported public performance revenues and royalty distributions of any music rights organization in the world, which is a testament to your extraordinary talent and creativity.
It’s important to note, however, that while those numbers are historic, they do reflect an impact to our revenues due to the COVID-19 pandemic. These challenges continue in our new fiscal year, and we anticipate a similar impact in FY ’21. Please know that we will continue to do everything we can to mitigate the situation and minimize the financial impact on our creative community.
BMI has been busy this quarter advocating on your behalf. We are continuing to have productive conversations with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) as well as our industry partners on the future of BMI’s consent decree. As you know, we believe a gradual transition to a free market would create a level playing field for everyone involved. We hope for a decision from the DOJ on this matter in the near future. Additionally, in July BMI wrote a letter to Congress, signed by several other songwriting organizations, seeking an extension of the important relief programs included in the CARES Act that were scheduled to expire. Unfortunately, legislators have not yet acted, but BMI will continue to advocate on Capitol Hill to push for the protections and assistance needed by creators now more than ever.
I’d also like to share an update on SongView, the combined view of BMI and ASCAP musical works. We continue to make progress on this first-of-its-kind project, which will lead the industry towards greater data transparency and simplify the view of copyright ownership information for creators, publishers and music users. We are carrying out extensive testing and are on track to launch the first phase of SongView by the end of 2020.
As we continue to see painful unrest across the nation and a wide divide regarding the powerful movement for racial justice, I want to reiterate that BMI stands with the Black community and is highly focused on supporting this long overdue and necessary change. I previously mentioned the multiple steps BMI is taking to create meaningful change and most recently BMI announced the organizations that will receive support from our increased pledge of $275,000. These foundations are dedicated to advancing racial justice, voting rights, underserved communities and social justice reform. You can learn more about BMI’s commitment to drive change here.
In addition to your quarterly royalties, this distribution includes all 2019 payments for Twitch and Facebook, as well as first-time distributions for Apple TV + and Disney +. It also includes annual royalties for NCTA, sports leagues, theme parks, and several video-on-demand services. If you haven’t already, please sign up for direct deposit for faster and more secure royalty payments.
On a final note, I’d like to congratulate all of our affiliates who were honored this quarter with BMI Awards, which were celebrated online. Our virtual presentations, including BMI’s Film, TV & Visual Media Awards, Pop Awards, Trailblazers of Gospel Awards, and Christian Awards, feature exclusive video messages and incredible performances from our winners, as well as special photos, playlists, and much more. Please check them out and enjoy!
As we gear up for the fall, we’re looking forward to additional celebrations across our digital platforms to recognize the talented winners of BMI’s R&B/Hip-Hop Awards on September 14th, London Awards in October, and our Country Awards in November.
Your passion and creativity continue to amaze and inspire us every day. Thank you all for giving BMI the privilege of representing your phenomenal music.
President and Chief Executive Officer