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Copyright Royalty Board Issues Ruling in “Web-IV” Pandora Rate Case

December 16, 2015 6:23 PM

Musicians and record labels to see royalties from Pandora increase 15 percent

OAKLAND, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Pandora (NYSE: P), the world’s largest music discovery platform, today announced that the Copyright Royalty Board (CRB) released the rates and terms for the “Web-IV” rate-setting proceeding, establishing the sound recording performance royalty rates paid to performing artists and record labels by Internet radio services for the period of 2016-2020. While the company has not received the full supporting decision, the following is based on the company’s initial reactions to information posted on the Copyright Royalty Board’s website.

Pandora participated in the proceeding to ensure a vibrant, open and sustainable music marketplace. The CRB set the following rates and terms for services operating under a statutory license:

Per-Performance Rate Ad-Supported Subscription Blended*
“Web IV Rate” Decision for 2016 $0.0017 $0.0022 $0.00176
Current “Pureplay Rate” for 2015** $0.0014 $0.0025 $0.00153

*Pandora’s projected blended rate for 2016.**From 2006-2015, Pandora paid rates and terms under a Pureplay Agreement negotiated with SoundExchange. In 2015, the “Web III” or statutory rate was $0.0023.

The rates and terms announced today take effect January 1, 2016 and represent a 15 percent increase over Pandora’s 2015 effective per-performance royalty rate.

“This is a balanced rate that we can work with and grow from. The new rate structure will enable continued investment by Pandora to drive forward a thriving and vibrant future for music,” said Brian McAndrews, chief executive officer of Pandora. “Working collaboratively with partners across the music industry is a top priority as we connect listeners with music they love, and artists with their audience.”

Pandora continues to aggressively invest in initiatives to transform how fans and musicians connect. Examples include the recent acquisitions of Ticketfly and Next Big Sound, as well the planned purchase of assets from Rdio. Additionally, Pandora rolled out cutting-edge programs like the Artist Marketing Platform (AMP), including Artist Audio Messaging, that benefit music makers by harnessing the power of Pandora’s immense data and scale to connect with their audiences.

While statutory licensing remains an important aspect of a vibrant music ecosystem, Pandora recently expressed its intent to secure “win-win” direct licensing agreements with labels and publishers to drive future growth. Examples of progress include publisher licensing agreements with BMG, SONGS, Sony/ATV and Warner/Chappell, as well as label agreements with Merlin and Naxos.

“This decision provides much-needed certainty for both Pandora and the music industry,” continued McAndrews. “We are moving full-steam ahead with our ambitious plan to continue to build the world’s most powerful music discovery platform.”

Listen to Pandora’s Investor call today/tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. PT. A live audio webcast will be available on the Pandora Investor Relations website at http://investor.pandora.com. A live domestic dial-in is available at (877) 355-0067 or (443) 853-1239 internationally. A domestic replay will be available at (855) 859-2056 or (404) 537-3406 internationally, using passcode 4130622, and available via webcast replay until December 31, 2015.

The summary of the Copyright Royalty Board’s determination can be found http://www.loc.gov/crb.


Pandora is the world’s most powerful music discovery platform – a place where artists find their fans and listeners find music they love. We are driven by a single purpose: unleashing the infinite power of music by connecting artists and fans, whether through earbuds, car speakers, live on stage or anywhere fans want to experience it. Our team of highly trained musicologists analyze hundreds of attributes for each recording which powers our proprietary Music Genome Project®, delivering billions of hours of personalized music tailored to the tastes of each music listener, full of discovery, making artist/fan connections at an unprecedented scale. Founded by musicians, Pandora empowers artists with valuable data and tools to help grow their careers and connect with their fans.

www.pandora.com| Pandora Blog | Pandora LinkedIn | @PandoraPulse


Dave Grimaldi, 202-380-2203

Public Affairs

[email protected]


Dom Paschel, 510-842-6960

Corporate Finance & Investor Relations

[email protected]

Source: Pandora


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