Australian Recorded Music Sales for 6 Months to 30 June 2006
Digital music and strong album sales drive local music market

Recorded music sales in Australia increased by over $12 million, or 5.8 percent, to over $224 million in the six months to June 2006 (when compared to the corresponding period last year), the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) reported today.

The market for CD albums experienced one of the greatest gains in recent years, with over 3 million extra units shipped to retail, representing a 17% increase on the same period last year (although revenues were up only 4.65% illustrating a further decline in unit wholesale prices). Strong sales were reported by Australian artists including Human Nature, The Veronicas, Rogue Traders, Bernard Fanning, Wolfmother and Pete Murray.

As expected, digital sales have also posted very significant gains in another positive trend for the industry. Digital music, included for the first time in the half year figures, accounted for 5.5% of the overall value of the recorded music market during the period. This compares very favourably with the full year results for 2005 where, as at December 2005, digital sales made up 1.5% of the market for the full year. With the global market for digital music growing at a phenomenal rate for a number of years, the Australian industry is encouraged by this result and is continuing to aggressively license and market music in digital formats.

While sales increases have been identified in most key physical formats, declines continue for CD singles as well as vinyl and cassette. However, with almost 95% of online digital downloads being track based rather than bundles or albums, the decline in the physical singles market has been more than offset by the increase in digital track sales during the period both by value and volume. Online digital album sales account for only 0.7% of the overall market for albums (by volume).

The results for the first half have again underscored the ongoing success of Australian artists. Retail sales of albums by local artists have grown to represent 31.8% of the Top 100 albums chart for the period, up from 23% last year. Similarly, the Top 100 singles chart has also seen an increase in Australian representation with 31.7% of Top 100 sales by local acts, an increase from 25% for the corresponding period last year. In total 27 Australian titles appear in the Top 100 singles chart for the first half of the year, including two entries each by Lee Harding, The Veronicas, Kate DeAraugo and Rogue Traders, as well as three entries by Shannon Noll.

In summary, during the six month period to June 2006:

• Record companies shipped over 24.8 million units of physical recorded music product, an increase of approximately 9.11% on the same period last year, although the overall value of those sales increased by only 1.48%.

• Australian albums represented 31.8% of the Top 100 album chart sales for the period, up from 23% for the same period last year. Australian acts took 27 of the top 100 album spots including 5 of the Top 10:

No.2 Human Nature Reach Out The Motown Record
No.4 Rogue Traders Here Come The Drums
No5 The Veronicas The Secret Life Of…
No7 Bernard Fanning Tea And Sympathy
No9 Wolfmother Wolfmother

• By volume, Australian repertoire represented 31.7% of the Top 100 singles chart for the six months to June, up from 25% in the corresponding period in 2005.

While the industry is pleased with the results for the first six months, ARIA remains cautious about predicting full year results based on these half yearly statistics, particularly in relation to the next six months. Tougher economic conditions predicted for Australian households during the remainder of 2006 are likely to prove challenging for the industry.

Overall, the industry is encouraged by the significant increases in CDs and digital sales. It remains optimistic that a strong release schedule for the remainder of 2006 will ensure that this year continues to be positive for the industry.


More information.. 2006 ARIA Yearly Statistics.pdf


For more information contact:

Contact: Christy Hayes
ARIA Communications Manager
02 8569 1144

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