Sony’s global music operations — Sony Music Group and Sony Music Japan — benefited from a strong release schedule and positive currency effects as revenue grew 20.9% in the quarter ended June 30, 2022, the company announced on Friday (July 29). .
Total revenue was ¥308.1 billion (US$2.38 billion converted at the average exchange rate for the quarter). Operating income improved 10.1% to 61 billion yen ($471 million).
Changes in exchange rates played a significant role in year-on-year gains – from the previous quarter, the average yen-to-dollar rate increased from 109.5 to 129.4, and the average yen-to-dollar rate improved to 131 .9 to 138.0. That revaluation caused foreign currency to account for ¥35.9 billion of Sony Music’s ¥53.2 billion revenue gain. Stripping out this currency impact, revenues would have improved by 6.8%.
In recorded music, total revenue rose 31.4% to ¥199.6 billion (US$1.54 billion).
Strong growth in subscription streaming was credited with helping drive growth. Streaming revenue grew 27.5% to 139.1 billion yen ($1.08 billion). Physical revenue improved 23.2% to ¥25.6 billion (US$198 million). And the broad “other” category – including merchandise, licensing and live revenue – rose 79% to 27.3 billion yen ($211 million) due to artists returning to touring after a relatively slow quarter a year earlier.
In music publishing, total revenue rose 33.8% to ¥63 billion ($487 million). Sony Music Publishing peaked Billboard’s latest Publisher’s Quarterly ranking with a 22.65% share of the Hot 100 and a 24.67% share of top radio play in the first quarter – activity that would have driven some of the royalty collections in the second quarter.
Sony’s quarter was helped by a particularly strong release schedule that included Harry Styles‘ Harry’s housewhich achieved 521,000 album equivalent units in the US in its first week of release, landing all 13 numbers on the Hot 100. Other titles on Sony Music Entertainment’s top ten albums for the quarter were The future I never liked you; Doja Cat’s The planet her; Lil Durks 7220; Lil Nas X’s Montero; Harry Styles’ 2019 release Fine line; Tyler, The Creator’s Call me if you get lost; Kid Laroi’s F*ck Love 3+: Over You; Camila Cabello’p Family; and of the tool Fear vaccine.
Revenue in Sony Music’s visual media and platforms segment fell 19.7% to 42.8 billion yen ($330 million). Excluding visual media and platforms, the two music divisions’ revenue grew 32% to 262.6 billion yen ($2.03 billion).
Looking ahead, Sony Music raised its forecast for fiscal 2022 revenue by 3.2% to 1.28 trillion yen ($9.89 billion). It left unchanged its forecast for fiscal 2022 operating income of ¥230 million ($1.78 billion).