Merissa Marr (Reuters) London – Global music sales tumbled 7.2 percent in 2002 despite big hits from Eminem, Norah Jones and Shakira, and the music industry is bracing for another fall this year, a leading industry body said on Wednesday.
Rampant piracy, economic uncertainty and competition from other entertainment have dented the music industry, slashing the value of the global market to $32.2 billion, said the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI).
The London-based IFPI said the fall in world CD album sales was slightly less painful, declining six percent.
“The industry is not as bad as the headline figure suggests. CD sales are the core business and the fall there was less severe,” said IFPI Chairman Jay Berman.
But he warned there was more pain to come.
“In 2003, I think CD sales will be down about five percent.”
Sharp declines in single and cassette sales of 16 percent and 36 percent respectively, chipped away at the headline figure. CD albums account for 89 percent of total sales.
The music industry has been slashing costs, axing B-list stars and developing new technology to protect themselves from widespread piracy both online and illegal copying of CDs.
The gloom has been felt most by the big five music giants — Universal Music, Warner Music, Sony, BMG and EMI.
Shares in EMI, the only separately listed of the five, were 2.3 percent down at 94-1/4 pence in London at 1015 GMT.
The IFPI said music sales fell 8.4 percent in unit terms in 2002. The 7.2 percent figure refers to sales in value terms.