Nigerian Artists Earn N25bn in Spotify Royalties

Vanessa Obioha 

Nigerian artists are raking in royalties on the music streaming platform, Spotify. According to its annual report ‘Loud and Clear’ —launched last year as part of its mission to increase transparency in the music industry by sharing data on Spotify’s royalty payments and breaking down the global streaming economy, the players and the process — Nigerian artists earned over N25 billion in royalties, double of what the streaming platform paid last year. 

That figure is not only largely attributed to the continued global appeal of afrobeats, but also to other genres such as fuji, Igbo pop, and highlife. According to Spotify data, the genres are experiencing increasing popularity. Highlife saw an uptick of 224%, Igbo pop 303%, and fuji 187%, in the last 12 months. Also in the first quarter of 2024, highlife, fuji, and Igbo pop had an increased listenership of 240%, 175%, and 270% respectively. The platform further shared that Spotify listeners discovered Nigerian artists almost 950 million times in 2023, a good indicator of their global appeal. This is in addition to over 1,400 Nigerian artists added to Spotify’s editorial playlists.

While Spotify did not specify the top-earning Nigerian artists on its platform, it however indicated that the number of Nigerian artists earning over N10 million in royalties quadrupled since 2018.

“The significant growth in royalties earned by Nigerian artists on our platform is a powerful testament to their talent, creativity, and global appeal,” said Spotify’s Managing Director for Sub-Saharan Africa, Jocelyne Muhutu-Remy. “We’re proud to amplify their voices and fuel the Nigerian music revolution. As a leader in the streaming economy, we’re committed to supporting African creators to make a living from their art and we’ll continue to invest further in African artists to ensure this momentum continues.” 

The ‘Loud and Clear’ report also revealed that streaming platforms are democratizing the music industry, with over half of royalties going to independent artists or labels. Additionally, Nigerian artists dominated their country’s music scene, owning over 80% of tracks on Nigeria’s daily top 50 chart.

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