Peter Kafka, writing for Recode, on how streaming music has now become Warner Music’s biggest business:
The company announced that money from services like Spotify and Apple Music was the single biggest source of recorded music revenue in the first quarter of the year, surpassing both physical sales and sales of digital downloads. That’s the first time any of the big music labels has hit that inflection point.
Warner’s streaming music revenue increased $72 million for the quarter — more than half of which came from sales outside the U.S. — while downloads declined by $17 million and physical revenue dropped by $6 million. Warner’s recorded music sales increased by 10 percent overall, and the company’s total revenue also increased 10 percent.