björn ulvaeus moves to ppl for his international royalty collections

Swedish songwriter, producer and performer, Björn Ulvaeus, has signed to PPL for the administration of his international neighbouring rights collections. As a member of ABBA, Björn helped create one of the most enduring pop groups of all time, co-writing and performing hits such as “Mamma Mia”, “Dancing Queen” and “Fernando”. Björn joins the 65,000 plus performers and recording rightsholders that PPL collects for internationally.

After officially forming ABBA in 1973 the group went on to have nine UK Number 1 singles and albums, including greatest hits collection – ‘Gold’ – which is the longest-running Top 100 album in UK chart history, clocking 924 weeks as of 21 January 2019. The band are inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and their music has continued to capture the imagination of the general public, as reflected by the success of the “Mamma Mia!” stage and film franchise. The band has also suggested that new music is to be released alongside a tour featuring digital replicas of each member.

Björn has also become a passionate advocate for initiatives that help ensure artists are accurately credited, and then remunerated, for their work. He is a backer of music technology start-up Session (previously known as Auddly), which allows creators to add secure, transparent and correct credits to music recordings, helping to ensure that accurate music metadata enters the digital supply chain at source. This in turn means that those involved in the creation of a recording can be properly credited when it is used. PPL shares this goal as its payments are underpinned by accurate recording metadata, and so it partnered with Session in 2018 to allow PPL members to benefit from the service.

At SXSW 2019, Session launched “Creator Credits”, a forward-thinking project aimed at involving creators in metadata collection as early as possible in the music creation process. The bold initiative has been described as the ‘world’s first end-to-end music credits ecosystem’ and is being supported by a heavyweight alliance that includes Max Martin’s MXM Music, Avid Technology, DDEX (Digital Data Exchange) and Universal Music Group.

The accurate credits, added to a recording at any stage in the production process, are automatically pushed downstream to collective management organisations (CMOs) like PPL as well as managers, labels, music publishers, distributors and streaming platforms, all of whom have a role to play in maintaining good quality data and helping music people get paid.

The technology acts as a “handshake” with CMOs like PPL, authenticating creators and associating vital industry identifiers (such as an International Performer Number) with their society account. It is being considered a durable solution to the challenges of capturing and recognising creators’ credits in a complex digital world.

By signing to PPL, Björn will benefit from over 95 agreements that the company holds with (CMOs) around the world. In 2019, these agreements covered approximately 95% of the global value of the neighbouring rights markets for performers and recording rightsholders. These relationships, along with an experienced team of neighbouring rights specialists and leading data and technology, help PPL identify and collect significant royalty sums; in 2019, its international revenue had a record year, collecting £86.7 million. Since PPL was founded in 1934 the company has collected over £3 billion in the UK and internationally for performers and recording rightsholders, of which £2.6 billion has been collected this century.

Peter Leathem, Chief Executive Officer at PPL, said:

“It is a privilege to be able to collect the international royalties for Björn Ulvaeus. As an artist, Björn has contributed so much to the music industry, and he continues to do so through his advocacy for better music data management and the more efficient flow of money to creators – two goals also shared by PPL.

Our work with innovative companies such as Session benefits our members by developing an ecosystem of tools that will help them manage their repertoire more efficiently. Our neighbouring rights expertise, on top of strong CMO relationships and board-level representation on various industry bodies, allows us to stand up for our members’ and ensure they are paid correctly. By combining these partnerships with internal investment in people and technology, we can constantly improve how we collect and distribute money for those that we represent.”

Björn Ulvaeus said:

“The music industry is experiencing a period of significant change as digitisation continues to underpin increased consumption. As the use of music grows we must ensure those who invest time and talent in music are fairly paid for their work. Session is one of a number of companies and organisations working towards this goal, and PPL is another. By making it easier to track and credit the contributions of artists in the studio we are helping get music people paid. I look forward to extending this working relationship beyond Session, and for PPL to help get songwriters and performers paid.”



For media enquiries, contact David Cohen, PPL Communications and PR Manager, at / 020 7534 1262 / 07729 321 096