APPLICATIONS for the next round of funding for the Music Export Growth Scheme (MEGS) are now being received. Eligible music companies and individuals – have until 4th January 2021 to apply here, and will be notified in late January 2021 if they have been successful.
The BPI-administered scheme, which is returning following a hiatus caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, is funded by the Department for International Trade – working in partnership with the Exporting is GREAT campaign. It is designed to boost British music exports by supporting small to medium-sized music companies as they look to build on the potential of their artists in overseas markets.
BPI is keen to help kick-start the re-promotion of music in overseas markets, so, with live touring and travel restricted by lockdowns and other Covid-19-related measures, BPI will focus this round of funding on digital marketing and other forms of overseas promotion.
Applications are invited to help fund activities such as radio, TV and press promotion; live streams; social media engagement; retail marketing with DSPs and stores; advertising across all platforms; and other marketing, promotion and asset creation for overseas use. Any funds secured by successful applicants must be spent and claimed by March 31st 2021.
UK acts and their labels currently account for one in nine albums sold around the world and one in every ten streams – a level of success underlined by the recent Spotify announcement that recordings by British artists, Harry Styles (Fine Line) and Dua Lipa (Future Nostalgia), are among the top-five most globally-streamed albums of the year on that platform.
This highlights the vital importance of music exports and the pressing need to help British artists of all profiles and backgrounds to help find and build their audiences at home and around the world. It demonstrates the leading role labels play in a creative process that matters not just to the music
industry but to the wider UK Economy and to future growth strategies aimed at boosting international trade.
Since its launch in 2014, the Music Export Growth Scheme has enabled over £4 million – a significant measure of it match-funded by music companies – to be distributed to 272 British-based acts drawn largely from the independent music community. It has generated £46.5 million in export revenues for the UK economy, and an average return of £12 for every £1 invested.
A diverse range of artists and genres have been supported in the past six years including Hyundai Mercury Prize winners, Wolf Alice and Young Fathers, and BRITs Mastercard British Album of The Year and Hyundai Mercury Prize winner Dave. Other acts backed with investment range from Welsh rockers Catfish & The Bottlemen, new wave jazz group Ezra Collective, Scottish singer-songwriter Nina Nesbitt, and BRIT School rock outfit Black Midi, to saxophonist YolanDa Brown, grime performer Ghetts, singer-songwriter Tom Speight, Anglo-Indian-American percussionist Sarathy Korwar, and the London Symphony Orchestra.
Chris Tams, BPI director of International overseeing the MEGS programme, said: “It’s great news that we are able to re-open applications to the Music Export Growth Scheme, which has become an amazing success story for British music overseas and for indie acts in particular.
“This investment provides invaluable and timely support that can make that critical difference to artists on the verge of an international breakthrough, helping them to build impetus and grow their global audience. With all the severe disruption and financial challenges of the past year, the scheme is now needed more than ever.“
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