In the summer of 2003, I put together a list of leading companies in the industry, and I have tried to update it periodically. Below is a comprehensive list of the world's major picture libraries and portals that produce and license rights to still images. In order to provide a general idea of their relative size, I have divided these companies into three categories:
Group A - those with gross annual sales in excess of $20 million,
Group B - those with annual sales between $5 and $20 million and
Group C - those with annual sales between $1 and $5 million.
In my opinion, all the companies not included in this list have gross annual sales of less than $1 million.
In Group A, I have listed the companies in order, based on size, with Getty Images selling the most in this category, and Aflo in Japan selling the least, but still more than $20 million. Groups B and C are organized in alphabetical order. Despite the fact that several of these companies are public companies and thus required to report their figures, most are privately held and detailed sales figures are simply not available to the public. In the case of these privately held companies, I have made a determination based on discussions with various industry leaders and photographers.
The order is based entirely on the company's licensing of still imagery and does not include other lines of business. For example, I did not consider revenue from Getty's footage business, Jupitermedia's online information division or a21's fine art print division.
The order is based on what I believe these companies report as gross revenue, not necessarily the gross license fees of the images in their collections. For example, an agency like Image Source has images on Getty Images and many other portals. An ImageSource image may sell on Getty for $100, but Image Source may only receive and report 30% (or so) of that money. Getty will report 100% of this sale on its books. My positioning of Image Source is based on the revenue I believe it will report. Using this strategy, there will be a great deal of double counting.
I'm sure I have missed a few companies or placed them in the wrong category. Please add suggested changes to the comments section of this site, or contact me directly.
I will be updating this list when appropriate.
|GROUP A - Over $20 million|
|Â Â Â Â (plus iStockphoto & Punchstock)|
|CorbisÂ (plus Veer)||USA|
|GROUP B - $5 to $20 million|
|A21 (formerly SuperStock)||USA|
|Bon Color Photo Agency||Japan|
|Green Recovery (Hachette Photos)||France|
|Science Photo Library||UK|
|GROUP C - $1 to $5 million|
|Adobe Stock Photos||USA|
|All Over Press||Scandinavia|
|De Agostini Picture Library||Italy|
|Imagine China||South Africa|
|The Image Works||USA|
|Photo Bank Yokohama||Japan|
|StockFood||USA & Germany|
|Time-Life Picture Library||USA|