Alamy First Quarter 2006

Posted on 6/1/2006 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (0)

2

ALAMY REPORTS GROWTH IN SUPPLY


June 2, 2006

Alamy has reported numbers for Q1 2006 that show another huge growth in supply with 825,052 images added to their database during the quarter. This was up a full 28% from the 644,808 added in Q4 2005 and 86% from the 443,587 added in Q1 2005. The company currently has well over 5 million images in its database and if they haven't hit 6 million by now they certainly will very soon.

    (Note: Although it is not clear if you go back to Q1 & Q2 of 2004 I believe that the 1,368,538 is not the total images "submitted" during those two quarters, but rather the total images in the database at the end of Q2.)

Later this year Alamy plans to make the submission process easier by allowing contributors to upload images directly over the internet rather than requiring images to be submitted on CD's or DVD's as is currently their practice. This could lead to an increased volume of submissions.

The average price per RF image licensed remains the same as in Q4 2005 and up 7% from the same quarter a year ago. The average price for an RM image is down 7% from Q4 2005 and down 11% from the same quarter a year ago. The average price for RM images is also 23% lower than the average price for RF.

Alamy doesn't report figures that would enable me to calculate total images licensed or gross revenue so it is impossible to determine whether revenue or the number of units licensed is rising as rapidly as the number of images available. However, anecdotal information from various photographers and agencies indicates that while total sales are probably rising significantly the return-per-image that the suppliers see is actually falling.

It is interesting that the percent of revenue from editorial licenses went up 4% from 65% to 69% of total revenue and the percent of revenue from commercial licenses went down a corresponding 4%. Since the average price for RF images remained the same and the average price of RM went down this would indicate that editorial buyers are purchasing an increasing share of RF images.

One of my theories has been that editorial buyers would be limited in the amount of very generic RF imagery they could use because the imagery required for their various projects tends to have very specific, narrow criteria. But the numbers indicate that more and more frequently editorial buyers are able to find RF images that suit their purposes, and the averages indicate that they are willing to pay more for these RF images than they would have to pay for RM, if they could find what they want as RM.

The average price for each image sold for editorial use was $126. Since editorial buyers are purchasing more RF images at the average $206 rate, that would also indicate that at least some, and maybe many, of the RM images are being licensed for less than the $126 fee.

While an increasing number of photographers are submitting RF, the vast majority still seem to have not caught up with the idea that on average RM images earn LESS per sale than RF. In the quarter 1,435 photographers submitted a total of 95,940 RF images and 2,569 submitted 450,653 RM images. There were 1,134 photographers that submitted both RM and RF.

Since the beginning of 2004 photographers have added 2,561,138 images to the database and agencies have added 1,850,761. Thus while agencies represented only 42% of the total images added they represented 57% of the total revenue generated indicating that there is some advantage when agencies apply some editing standards to submissions. Nevertheless, the percent of agency sales relative to photographer sales is declining and if photographers continue to submit many more images than agencies eventually the total percentage of revenue may level out, but not the average return-per-image.

The following is a detailed chart of the information reported by Alamy.


































































































































































































































































































































































































































2004

2004

2004

2005

2005

2005

2005

2006

Contributor Information

Q1 & Q2

Q3

Q4

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Q1

New RF images from photogs.

58,315

38,787

39,827

53,408

74,008

89,199

83,614

95,940

New RF images from agencies

128,199

89,852

94,097

60,850

140,360

63,451

125,405

152,752

New RM images from photogs.

222,103

163,962

169,321

203,641

258,847

268,147

291,356

450,653

New RM images from agencies

132,931

105,090

98,619

125,688

143,297

120,030

144,433

125,707

% Revenue photographers

33%

35%

36%

38%

39%

41%

40%

43%

% Revenue agencies

67%

65%

64%

62%

61%

59%

60%

57%

2004

2004

2004

2005

2005

2005

2005

2006

Contributor Information

Q1 & Q2

Q3

Q4

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Q1

Photogs. submitting images

2,920

1,600

1,692

2,030

2,209

2,349

2,452

2,870

Photogs. submitting RM images

2,875

1,456

1,554

1,850

2,001

2,111

2,179

2,569

Photogs. submitting RF images

1,525

636

678

907

1,041

1,135

1,214

1,435

Agencies submitting images

229

163

159

165

175

179

161

178

Agencies submitting RM images

203

140

131

142

141

142

128

130

Agencies submitting RF images

97

56

61

58

70

72

67

79

RM images submitted in quarter

900,758

269,052

267,940

329,329

402,144

388,177

435,789

576,360

RF images submitted in quarter

467,780

128,639

133,924

114,258

214,368

152,650

209,019

248,692

All images submitted in quarter

1,368,538

397,691

401,864

443,587

616,512

540,827

644,808

825,052

2004

2004

2004

2005

2005

2005

2005

2006

Percentage Revenue Info

Q1 & Q2

Q3

Q4

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Q1

Images per transaction - credit card

1.9

1.8

1.8

1.7

1.7

1.8

1.8

1.8

Images per transaction - account

2.6

2.5

2.7

2.9

2.9

3.0

3.3

3.4

% Revenue RF

46.5%

46.8%

45.0%

43.0%

43.1%

42.3%

41.0%

40.0%

% Revenue RM

53.5%

53.2%

55.0%

57,0%

56.9%

57.7%

59.0%

60.0%

% Images sold RF

53.3%

48.6%

45.9%

41.0%

39.0%

39.9%

36.4%

33.0%

% Images sold RM

46.7%

51.4%

54.1%

59.0%

61.0%

60.1%

63.6%

67.0%

% Images sold - credit card

29.9%

27.2%

23.9%

23.0%

21.9%

23.0%

21.0%

18.0%

% Images sold - account

70.1%

72.8%

76.1%

77.0%

79.0%

77.0%

79.0%

82.0%

% Revenue - credit card

28.5%

26.2%

26.2%

25.0%

25.4%

28.1%

25.1%

23.0%

% Revenue - account customer

71.5%

73.8%

73.8%

75.0%

75.0%

71.9%

74.9%

77.0%

% Revenue editorial licenses

60.0%

64.2%

61.4%

67.0%

66.0%

62.7%

65.0%

69.0%

% Revenue commercial licenses

40.0%

35.8%

38.6%

33.0%

34.0%

37.3%

35.0%

31.0%

2004

2004

2004

2005

2005

2005

2005

2006

Average Price in USD

Q1 & Q2

Q3

Q4

Q1

Q2

Q3

Q4

Q1

Avg RF price - credit card

$133.00

$161.00

$175.00

$191.00

$199.00

$206.00

$210.00

$211.00

Avg RM price - credit card

$266.00

$225.00

$232.00

$239.00

$276.00

$304.00

$236.00

$225.00

Avg RF price - account

$145.00

$176.00

$172.00

$193.00

$206.00

$114.00

$203.00

$203.00

Avg RM price - account

$174.00

$177.00

$174.00

$170.00

$156.00

$146.00

$162.00

$151.00

Avg RM price - editorial use

$135.00

$141.00

$134.00

$132.00

$137.00

$131.00

$131.00

$126.00

Avg RM price - commercial use

$410.00

$427.00

$381.00

$423.00

$423.00

$425.00

$359.00

$389.00

Avg price all RM images

$183.00

$182.00

$180.00

$177.00

$165.00

$182.00

$170.00

$158.00

Avg price all RF images

$139.00

$171.00

$182.00

$192.00

$203.00

$201.00

$206.00

$206.00




Copyright © 2006 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-251-0720, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

Jim Pickerell is founder of www.selling-stock.com, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to: http://www.jimpickerell.com/Curriculum-Vitae.aspx.  

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