PRS Foundation’s Momentum Music Fund generates over £13 million for British music
We are delighted to reveal the findings of a five year independent evaluation of its Momentum Music Fund at The Great Escape music festival in Brighton. Initiated by PRS Foundation and Arts Council England in 2013, the Momentum Music Fund has established a strong reputation for funding, supporting and spotlighting talent at crucial tipping points in their careers.
The pioneering Momentum fund provides career-boosting grants of between £5,000- £15,000 to acts at a pivotal time in their creative and business development. Artists based anywhere in the whole of the UK, working in any style of contemporary popular music can apply for Momentum funding to support activities such as recording, touring and marketing.
The outcomes of the Momentum Music Fund speak for themselves. To date, the fund has supported 273 artists and bands, resulting in:
- the creation of over 160 albums (including Mercury nominated albums and dozens of top twenty chart placements)
- support for over 180 UK tours and over 1,000 live dates
- £13 million generated for the British music industry
- 3,896 applications received with a 7% success rate of funds being granted and over £2.5 million awarded.
All of this has established Momentum as an incredibly successful fund which has helped develop many talented artists progress to sustainable music careers.
The fund boasts a roster of hugely successful artists amongst its past beneficiaries such as Years & Years, Little Simz, Public Service Broadcasting, Floating Points, Bugzy Malone and Anna Meredith. A large number of supported artists were already signed to independent labels such as Bella Union, Moshi Moshi, Holy Roar, Rough Trade and 4AD, and, as highlighted by the evaluation, Momentum has supported artists, team members and the independent sector significantly. The likes of Years & Years, Oh Wonder, Yungen and Spring King and more went on to sign to major labels as an outcome of successfully funded projects.
The fund has been successful in supporting diverse talent across the UK with black British music genres (e.g. Hip Hop, Rap, Grime and R&B) overtaking alternative/indie when it comes to the number of successful applications. 43% of grants have gone to either female or mixed gender groups and since monitoring ethnicity in 2014 the consistently high number of supported BAME artists (49%), demonstrates Momentum’s relevance and reach across England’s very diverse independent artists.
PPL have grown their commitment to the fund by increasing their partner contribution to become Momentum’s most recent major donor. Peter Leathem, CEO, PPL said, “At PPL, we know the hard work and investment that goes in to making, touring and promoting music. As such, we understand how pivotal Momentum funding is for acts at such a critical stage in their career. After a successful first year of supporting the Momentum fund, PPL is delighted to be continuing its support into 2018 with an increased financial commitment. With our added funding and input, we hope the Foundation can further its reach, its impact and, ultimately, its successful influence on the future of the British music industry.”
Most recently, partnerships have been announced with Creative Scotland, Arts Council of Wales and Welsh Government, so that more musicians across the UK have access to this instrumental career-changing fund. Spotify has also renewed support to the fund until 2020. Bryan Johnson, Lead, Artist & Label Marketing at Spotify said, “We’re proud to have worked alongside PRS Foundation as a Momentum partner for the past three years, and look forward to our continued partnership. Spotify is committed to investing in artists and providing them with the opportunities to expand their fan base and showcase their music to our global audience of 170+ million users. This report proves that support of this kind is vital and is already significantly benefitting the careers of some of the most exciting and innovative artists in the UK..”
The fund’s accomplishments are further backed up with the fact that:
- £13 million has been generated for the UK music industry
- Of the 52 artists funded that were working part time in music before receiving funding nearly half of these moved to full time employment following support from Momentum
- 75% of musicians say they are now playing to bigger audiences
- 91% of artists say their streaming stats have improved
The report also details how popular the fund has been since 2013. Demand has outstripped its resources, with a total of £45 million being requested and over £2.5 million awarded. 3,896 applications have been received with a 7% success rate of funds being granted. It’s clear the fund could be bigger.
Vanessa Reed, CEO at PRS Foundation said, “This 5 year partnership with Arts Council England has resulted in one of the most successful programmes PRS Foundation has ever delivered. Combining public funds with industry backing and expertise, it presents a unique investment model for emerging artists as part of an evolving ecosystem for music. I look forward to growing this fund over the next 5 years with new and existing partners who share our passion for supporting diverse talent and sustainable careers.”
Managed by PRS Foundation, the Momentum Music Fund awards grants of up to £15,000 using funds from PRS Foundation, PPL, Creative Scotland, Arts Council of Wales and Welsh Government. Spotify contributes additional funding in addition to a reward package. PRS Foundation and Arts Council England initiated The Momentum Music Fund in 2013. Arts Council England originally established the need for this specific fund and supported the programme from 2013-18.