Electronic music made £2.5billion for the UK economy last year

A new report has revealed that Electronic music generated around £2.5billion for the UK economy last year.

The study was commissioned by the Night Time Industries Association (NTIA), and conducted as part of the ‘Electronic Beats, Economic Treats 2024’ music report. It took into account the economic impact of electronic music on the UK economy – looking at trends across recorded music, music publishing and the live scene.

In the study, it was found that the genre added approximately £2.5billion to the country’s economy throughout 2023, despite the external threats faced by grassroots music venues.

The findings showed a nine per cent decline in visitors to nightclubs over the past 12 months, and the total spend on things associated with a night out (transport, drinks etc) had dropped by 14 per cent.

It comes as the Music Venue Trust (MVT) recently revealed that over 30 per cent of all nightclubs in the UK had closed their doors permanently since the start of the pandemic, and 2023 was the worst year for live music spaces, with 125 grassroots venues closed in those 12 months alone.

“[This report] sheds light on the challenges faced by the industry, providing insights for future growth,” said Maria May, Head of Electronic Music at Creative Artists Agency (CAA) (via DJ Mag). “In order to continue to grow we need to support each other and the culture of dance music. Together, let us propel electronic music to new heights in the UK and beyond.”

Nightclub - stock photo
Nightclub – stock photo. CREDIT: Ron Sanford/Getty Images

With the rapid decline of live music spaces across the country, the study showed that it was predominantly festivals that helped contribute to the multi-billion figure.

According to additional research by Viberate, the UK is ranked third in the world for electronic music festivals, with around 300 events hosted each year and 30 per cent of artists billed playing electronic music. This, the report shows, has led to the economic contribution from festivals having risen by nine per cent to £567.8million.

Other events making an impact on the economy include concerts – which contributed a reported £285.5million last year, a five per cent increase from 2022 (£272.3m).

“This report really aims to highlight the profound impact of electronic music on communities, individuals, and the wider cultural landscape,” DJ, producer and promoter, Yousef told DJ Mag following the findings. “It is a testament to the unwavering dedication, creativity, and passion of those involved in shaping this vibrant and dynamic industry.”

At time of writing, dance and electronic music continue to be some of the most popular genres in the UK, and the former is the second most searched-for genre on digital platforms.

Nightclub - stock photo.
Nightclub – stock photo. CREDIT: Flashpop/Getty Images

What’s more, the report showed that electronic music’s cultural footprint is continuing to grow and was responsible for 10.6 per cent of all UK singles revenue in 2022 – up by 10 per cent from the year prior and responsible for 15.5 per cent of the weekly Top 10 in the Official Singles Chart in 2023.

Find the full report here.

Earlier this month, the NTIA made a push for government action, following new statistics revealing that around 31 per cent of nightclubs in the UK were forced to close last year.

In the statistics, it was revealed that there was a “profound and systematic marginalisation of the nightclub sector”, which poses a threat to the “vitality of our cultural landscape”. It was free businesses that were most heavily affected, closing down 312 businesses – an equivalent to 33 per cent of the market.

“While the pandemic has exacerbated existing challenges, the systematic closure of nightclubs cannot be solely attributed to COVID-19’s impact. It reflects years of neglect, burdensome regulations, and insufficient governmental support,” the NTIA said of the findings.

“In light of this urgent situation, the NTIA demands that the government takes immediate action to provide financial relief to struggling nightclubs. Central to this relief is the imperative for the government to reduce VAT to 12.5 per cent across the board, failing which further closures across the sector are inevitable.”

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