Market Size Revenue Analysis

Posted on 5/30/2008 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (0)

I believe the gross worldwide revenue generated from the licensing of stock imagery, both still photos and illustrations, is about $1.8 billion annually. There has been no growth since last year's prediction. This figure does not include footage, music, assignment work, rights clearance, poster sales (except for that part of the total revenue paid to use the image) or any of the other business in which many of the industry's leading companies are involved.

This article focuses on licensing rights to stock imagery. The figures include wire service imagery made available through subscriptions and all other subscription products.

About $1.1 billion of the $1.8 billion comes from images that are used for commercial purposes, and $700 million is for editorial uses. In general, the overall revenue breakdown by region is 41% from the Americas, 49% from EMEA and 10% from Asia/Pacific. Currency exchange rates play an important role in these percentages.

The chart below breaks down gross revenues (in millions) for the various regions:


Commercial Rev.Editorial Rev

Total

Americas

$546

$192

$738

EMEA

$423

$459

$882

Asia/Pacific

$126

$54

$180

Within each region my estimated breakdowns are as follows:



CommercialEditorialTotal
Americas




U.S.

$453

$160

$613


Canada

$49

$17

$66


C & S America

$44

$15

$59






EMEA




UK

$115

$124

$239


Europe

$283

$307

$590


Middle East

$25

$28

$53






Asia/Pacific




Japan

$75

$24

$99


Australia

$25

$12

$37


Rest of Asia

$26

$18

$44

These estimates of gross sales are not meant to be the sum total revenue of all companies whose images are sold within the region. In this industry, there is a lot of double counting, due to one company distributing the imagery of another. A portion of the revenue from many sales shows up on the books of two or more companies.

I estimate that at least 20%, and probably higher, of total revenue collected from customers shows up on the books of two or more companies. Thus, if we could total the reported income from all the companies in the industry, it would be in the range of $2.16 billion, not the $1.8 billion I believe was collected in license fees.

Hard News, Editorial Features, Books

I estimate that about one-third of the total editorial numbers are for news pictures, one-third for editorial features and one-third for books. However, in some regions, book use makes up a larger percentage of editorial use; in others, a greater percentage is attributed to newspapers and magazines.

Micropayment Growth

Some will argue that there has been a huge growth in micropayment usage and a huge growth in new customers coming into the industry. Therefore, there must have been some growth in revenue in 2007 compared to 2006 and before. In my opinion, the availability of high-quality images at micropayment prices has cannibalized enough traditional sales to offset any overall revenue growth that microstock sales might have contributed. Getty Images alone has estimated that its Creative Stills revenue will be down $100 million in 2008 compared to 2007, and it will continue to fall.

The new customers micropayment has brought into the market do offer a potential for future growth if commercial users of microstock are charged more competitive rates.



Copyright © 2008 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 301-461-7627, 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.  

Comments

Be the first to comment below.

Post Comment

You must log in to post comments.

Stay Connected

Sign up to receive email notification when new stories are posted.

Follow Us

Free Stuff

Stock Photo Pricing: The Future
In the last two years I have written a lot about stock photo pricing and its downward slide. If you have time over the holidays you may want to review some of these stories as you plan your strategy ...
Read More
Future Of Stock Photography
If you’re a photographer that counts on the licensing of stock images to provide a portion of your annual income the following are a few stories you should read. In the past decade stock photography ...
Read More
Blockchain Stories
The opening session at this year’s CEPIC Congress in Berlin on May 30, 2018 is entitled “Can Blockchain be applied to the Photo Industry?” For those who would like to know more about the existing blo...
Read More
2017 Stories Worth Reviewing
The following are links to some 2017 and early 2018 stories that might be worth reviewing as we move into the new year.
Read More
Stories Related To Stock Photo Pricing
The following are links to stories that deal with stock photo pricing trends. Probably the biggest problem the industry has faced in recent years has been the steady decline in prices for the use of ...
Read More
Stock Photo Prices: The Future
This story is FREE. Feel free to pass it along to anyone interested in licensing their work as stock photography. On October 23rd at the DMLA 2017 Conference in New York there will be a panel discuss...
Read More
Important Stock Photo Industry Issues
Here are links to recent stories that deal with three major issues for the stock photo industry – Revenue Growth Potential, Setting Bottom Line On Pricing and Future Production Sources.
Read More
Recent Stories – Summer 2016
If you’ve been shooting all summer and haven’t had time to keep up with your reading here are links to a few stories you might want to check out as we move into the fall. To begin, be sure to complet...
Read More
Corbis Acquisition by VCG/Getty Images
This story provides links to several stories that relate to the Visual China Group (VCG) acquisition of Corbis and the role Getty Images has been assigned in the transfer of Corbis assets to the Gett...
Read More
Finding The Right Image
Many think search will be solved with better Metadata. While metadata is important, there are limits to how far it can take the customer toward finding the right piece of content. This story provides...
Read More

More from Free Stuff