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2023 results: Sacem posts record collection revenue as its transformation progresses and it doubles down on its mission to support and protect its members

Improved operational efficiency enables Sacem to focus even more on serving its members and customers 

Its strategy of controlling costs while seeking the fairest value in all its agreements, combined with the modernisation of its tools, resulted in an increase in collections and royalties distributed to its members, the global societies that entrust it with mandates, and creators throughout the world

Against this backdrop, the Board of Directors voted unanimously to extend Cécile Rap-Veber's term as CEO


Since October 2021, Sacem has been rolling out an ambitious strategic plan to build a collective management society that operates at reasonable cost, is ever closer to and supportive of its members, and is more innovative.

After 2022, with the post-Covid return to a normal level of activity, this strategic plan continued in 2023 in a decidedly mixed environment. The vitality of live performance and cultural life in the regions, the continuing development of digital technology and the emergence of new uses (bars with a musical atmosphere, sports halls, fast channels, etc.) have opened up new opportunities for the dissemination of music. However, a number of uncertainties continue to weigh on the sector, which is also suffering from the effects of inflation, such as the difficulty of finding viable business models in digital, the potential impact of artificial intelligence on the creative professions, and the overall weakening of the media economy.


2023 validated Sacem's strategy, which focuses on 3 key priorities

  1. Improve operational efficiency and better control costs

Sacem has made controlling its costs a priority, managing to reduce its net operating costs-to-collections ratio for the second year running (10.76% in 2023 compared with 11.65% in 2022). This helps guarantee creators and publishers the fairest remuneration for the exploitation of their works. 

It has also continued to modernise its operations to provide more efficient service to its members. The introduction of numerous IT tools has improved the processing of audiovisual works and the registration of domestic works and facilitated member relations. The company is also actively working to use AI internally to improve its overall operations. 

In 2023 SACEM accelerated collection and distribution activities for the benefit of its members, for general royalties - concerts or background music - and for the exploitation of streaming works on Apple Music and Spotify - with distribution three months after the quarter of exploitation. This will soon be the case for YouTube, for music content, from July 2024, making Sacem the most diligent society in Europe in terms of paying out main online royalties. More than 458,000 authors, composers and publishers worldwidehave been remunerated by Sacem for the use of their works as quickly as possible.

Finally, Sacem has developed a comprehensive range of services, including the creation of the mandate rights portal and the development of the MusicStart service (now also open to members), which covers more than 130,000 protected works, and the ongoing simplification of its operating rules for all players in the value chain.


  1. Better protection and support for creators and publishers

Sacem remains particularly attentive to its role as a supporter and protector of its members. A Social Protection and Training Department was created in 2022. In 2024, this department will continue to develop its training offerings and will see its scope and position further strengthened as it becomes an autonomous department reporting directly to the General Management. 

Creators also benefit from personalised support throughout their careers from Sacem's cultural action programme. Sacem offers support tailored to each repertoire and to the different stages in the life of a project. It also supports cultural structures of all sizes and for all audiences. In 2023, Sacem supported 3,657 projects for the dissemination and promotion of creation and music, both in France and abroad, for a total amount of €22.5 million.

All this support relies on resources generated by private copying levies, which not only represent fair compensation for the possibility of copying works on digital media, but also constitute a unique asset for funding creative work and cultural diversity. Because of the revenue generated by private copying levies, Sacem has for many years been able to support creators from all walks of life, including Zaho de Sagazan, Amine Bouhafa, Sofiane Pamart, Vacra, Perturbator and Clara Ysé, who are now gaining public recognition. This is why Sacem will continue its fight to defend this ethical model for funding and promoting musical diversity. 

Sacem is also committed to providing its members with the means to adapt to changes in the music industry, such as the rapid emergence of generative artificial intelligence. Sacem was the first collective management society to exercise its right to object (opt out), so it would be able to negotiate licences with AI platforms using its repertoire in their training databases. In 2023, Sacem also made a commitment to greater transparency in AI tools, particularly in discussions relating to the European AI Act, and will continue to do so in 2024.


  1. Innovate and open up new sources of growth, particularly internationally

Sacem's international activity also plays a key role in its development. In 2023, more than 50,000 members received royalty distributions from abroad (vs. 47,000 in 2022). Underscoring the attractiveness of its model for international creators and publishers, 3,000 new foreign members joined Sacem in 2023. Foreign artists now represent 12% of its members, contributing to the richness and export of its repertoire. This international presence will continue to grow in 2024 thanks to the signing of new mandates, such as the one signed with the Believe group for its publishing business (Sentric, Tunecore, etc.) on January 1, 2024, in a deal that covers more than 150 territories.


2023 marked another year of growth — but that does not erase the difficulties faced by many creators

  • In 2023, Sacem used its historical knowledge and its modern expertise and agility to maximise collections for the benefit of rights holders

Sacehas consolidated its leading position through its ability to collect royalties from all the new distribution channels, in addition to its anticipation of regulatory changes, the power of its data processing tools, and the quality of the agreements it has signed with its customers. In 2023, Sacem collected an unprecedented €1.487 billion in royalties (up 5% on 2022).

Highlighting the dynamism of the live music sector after the years marked by the Covid pandemic, general royalties reached €388 million (+18.5% compared to 2022), making a major contribution to growth in 2023 revenues. Sacem is keen to help audiences return to the cinemas, and has supported numerous organisers of public events, from cafés to the biggest festivals, through dedicated cultural initiatives. It has also put in place more effective tools for this type of collection, in order to offer better traceability and legibility of the royalties distributed, while further reducing distribution times in favour of the rights holders.

The 2023 performance is also largely due to digital. Digital collections, including amounts received under agreements with international publishers and foreign CMOs, rose to €557 million (+13% on 2022). Sacem is particularly vigilant about preserving its members' royalties in this ecosystem, and renegotiated key agreements in 2023 with Apple Music, Spotify and Deezer. It also renewed several SVOD contracts. Two new multi-territory online mandates also took effect in 2023, with the Hungarian society ARTISJUS and the Brazilian society UBC.

  • Thanks to the high level of collections and to cost controls, Sacem was able to ensure a net increase in distribution to its members, and the foreign collection societies with which it has signed mandates, while defending better ways of sharing value.

The increase in Sacem's collections, combined with tight control of its management account, meant that in 2023 a total of more than €1.233 billion could be allocated to rightsholders (+17% vs. 2022). In addition, a proposal will be put to the vote of the General Meeting on 18 June to pay an additional €37m in royalties in 2024, out of the surplus on the 2023 management account.

However, such good results must not overshadow the constant work carried out by Sacem to remove the existing obstacles to better remuneration for creators, many of whom face real poverty. The passage from physical media sales (CDs, DVDs, etc.) to streaming has led to a sharp drop in value creation. For many creators, digital technology is still not sufficiently lucrative because a limited number of artists benefit from most of the listening, even though the number of works available is constantly increasing, or because of the multiplication of the number of rights holders for the same work. Furthermore, even though prices remain very low despite inflation, the penetration rate of paid streaming in France remains very limited. Sacem has raised this issue with the public authorities (government and Centre National de la Musique) and hopes to work with them on solutions to improve geographical and generational take-up of paid subscriptions. It is also working with Deezer on the concept of "Artist Centric" distribution, Sacem being the only authors' society in the world to have carried out an impact analysis of this new model on its members' royalties. Sacem will also be taking the same approach with other streaming players involved in the same process. Lastly, collections from free distribution channels, whether social networks such as TikTok or Meta or private and public media replay platforms, also remain too low in relation to the growth in usage. Sacem will continue to fight to ensure that these channels, which have sometimes become the only way some works get distributed, pay out more to rights holders.


Preparing for the future

Against this backdrop — the rapid return to growth and the clear effectiveness of its strategy — the Board of Directors unanimously decided on an early term renewal for Cécile Rap-Veber, who has been Sacem’s CEO since October 22, 2021.

She will lead the implementation of two pillars of the strategic vision proposed to the Board by 2030, building on the work carried out over the past three years: efficiency for Sacem members, beneficial for society as a whole.


Christine Lidon, Chair of the Sacem Board of Directors: "In 2023, Sacem was, more than ever, true to its vocation of creating a home for all creators and all aesthetics. It has mobilised to seek ever greater value for its members and for the principals who have placed their trust in it, and has organised itself to support authors, composers and music publishers, in particular by taking care of the most vulnerable and by defending the demanding conception of copyright to which we are all attached.

Today, we are convinced of our society's ability to respond ever more effectively to the challenges of the future, and we are delighted to be continuing this adventure with Cécile Rap-Veber, in whom we have every confidence as she successfully leads management in taking on these developments."


Cécile Rap-Veber, CEO of Sacem: "2023 was a year of confirmation in the implementation of our major strategic priorities. We continued our transformation into Sacem 3.0 and worked to improve efficiency, ensuring the sustainability of our management account and optimising both our collections and the amount distributed to our members. Looking beyond the figures, we have worked to provide social and professional support for our members and have continued to defend our collective management model in the face of competition and technological upheaval. 

Sacem certainly wants to be efficient for its members, but it also wants to be useful for everyone, for its customers, its partners, for all those who make music or who simply love it.

Now more than ever, Sacem's usefulness makes sense in a society beset by generational, social and territorial divisions: by enabling music to be created and distributed to all audiences, throughout France, it helps to create social bonds.

We are now looking to a future where the major changes that marked 2023 will continue, whether it be the development of artificial intelligence or the emergence of new players. In this immensely challenging environment, we will continue to evolve in order to strengthen our capacity for innovation and to remain the undisputed leader in the collective management of copyright and the protection of creative works for the benefit of all.

With this in mind, I warmly thank the Board of Directors for its confidence. I see this term renewal as an encouragement to continue working, with all the members of the Board, with David El Sayegh, Deputy CEO, and with all the teams at Sacem to implement our common strategy in the service of our members, the creative professions, and civil society as a whole."

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