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Streaming and Downloads Helps UK Entertainment Sales to Rise After Five Year Decline

Posted by: , 11:29 AEDT, Thu January 2, 2014

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Digital streaming and downloads reverses fortune for UK's home entertainment industry, helping it to record its first rise in sales in over five years
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Image/Photo Credit: Johan Larsson @ Flickr, CC

The likes of Netflix and Spotify, and iTunes, have helped the UK home entertainment industry to post a rise in sales in 2013, according to new figures released by the Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA).

The growth of digital sales in music, movies and gaming have not only helped to offset the decline in physical sales, they have allowed the industry to record its first rise in sales since 2009.

Digital video sales grew by 40.2% compared to the previous year, with music streaming up 33.7% and digital game downloads up by 16.4%. Physical sales declined at the same time, with video down 6.8%, music down 7.6% and games down 2.9%.

Spotify was highlighted in the results as one of the year's best performers for the music industry, with the streaming service contributing £103.1m to the music industry's revenues. This accounted for 10% of the entire industry's revenues for the year.

Also a highlight was the fact that digital game sales exceeded physical sales for the first time ever, on the back of hit releases such as GTA V and FIFA 14. Despite this, sales of physical formats still equaled 56% of all home entertainment spending.

Overall, consumers spent £5.4 billion in 2013 on home entertainment, up 4% compared to 2012, the first increase in five years.

ERA director general Kim Bayley hailed these results and the shift towards digital sales. "This is a stunning result after at least five years of decline," said Bayley. "New technologies have historically presented challenges to the entertainment business, but these results show how our members are helping music, video and games companies find new markets."


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