Established in 1934, PPL exists to help ensure that those who invest their time, talent and money to make recorded music are fairly paid for their work.
As the UK’s music licensing company for over 120,000 performers and recording rightsholders, we license recorded music when it is played in public or broadcast on the radio or TV in the UK and then distribute the fees to the performers and recording rightsholders we represent. Through a network of international agreements with collective management organisations (CMOs) in other countries, PPL is also able to collect royalties for performers and recording rightsholders when their recorded music is played around the world.
We are committed to delivering excellent customer service and do not retain a profit for our services. After the deduction of operating costs, the licensing revenue is distributed fairly and efficiently to the performers and recording rightsholders we represent, based on the use of their music.
PPL licenses TV and radio broadcasters to play recorded music as part of their programming, with licensees ranging from the BBC, ITV, Channel4, Five and Sky to commercial radio networks such as Capital, Heart and Absolute Radio, as well as certain online services. We also license music suppliers to copy recorded music for services such as in-store music systems, jukeboxes, compilations for exercise classes and in-flight entertainment systems.
Our joint venture with PRS for Music, PPL PRS Ltd, issues licences to hundreds of thousands of businesses and organisations from all sectors across the UK playing recorded music in public. These can range from bars, nightclubs, shops and hotels to offices, factories, gyms, schools, universities and local authorities.
Through our sister company, VPL, we also license music videos for uses including TV broadcast and – again via PPL PRS Ltd – when they are shown in public.
Who are our members?
Over 100,000 performers and recording rightsholders are registered with PPL. Our members range from session musicians and emerging artists to major record labels and globally successful performers – all of whom are entitled to be fairly paid for the use of their recorded music. Through agreements with collective management organisations (CMOs) around the world, we are able to collect royalties for our members across the globe, whilst also representing those CMOs’ own members for PPL licensing purposes in the UK.
A note on PPL and PRS for Music
PPL and PRS for Music both license the use of music and collect royalties for the music industry, but each represents different rightsholders and have separate licences, terms and conditions. While PPL collects and distributes money on behalf of performers and record companies for the use of their recorded music, PRS for Music collects and distributes money on behalf of songwriters, composers and music publishers, for the use of their musical compositions and lyrics.
However, in 2018 we joined forces to streamline part of what we do, coming together to launch PPL PRS Ltd, which means that businesses and organisations playing or performing music in public can now obtain a single licence.