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East Midlands Chamber News

Music licensing company PPL PRS hopes to hit the right note with East Midlands Chamber duet and Restore the Rhythm campaign

Music licensing company PPL PRS Limited, which issues TheMusicLicence to businesses wishing to play music to their customers and staff, is continuing to solidify its presence in Leicester and the East Midlands as it links up with East Midlands Chamber as a strategic partner.

The company wants to build on its reputation as an employer of choice in the region after growing from a single member of staff three years ago to a current headcount of 260 people.

PPL PRS managing director Andrea Gray said: “We are very proud to be based here in Leicester, and proud to be a part of the thriving and supportive business community that helped us settle in back in 2017.

“We now hope to become a fundamental member of that community, and we also want to help and support other businesses within the area.

“Being a strategic partner of East Midlands Chamber allows us to engage with other industries, share best practice and knowledge, and of course help to build a fantastic network of companies – all working to ensure that the East Midlands remains an economic hub for UK industry.”

History of PPL PRS and TheMusicLicence

PPL PRS was formed in 2017 as a joint venture formed between the two music rights societies, PPL and PRS for Music, to manage the licensing of businesses and organisations that play music to their customers and staff.

It moved into Mercury Place the same year and, in February 2018, the company launched TheMusicLicence.

Under The Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, permission is needed from the relevant copyright holders – those people who create music – in order to play or perform music in public.

Obtaining TheMusicLicence gives businesses this permission in relation to the vast majority of commercially available music. This ranges from grassroots and independent artists and composers through to the biggest names in the business.

It also means they don’t have to spend time and energy contacting potentially hundreds of thousands of rightsholders individually to get permission to play or perform their music in their business.

The past three years have involved a steep growth trajectory. Starting with just a single employee in April 2017, PPL PRS quickly grew over the next six months and, before 2017 ended, there were more than 110 staff working in Mercury Place.

Early in 2018, the business recruited another 160-plus staff to administer and manage the launch of TheMusicLicence and transition customers from PPL and PRS for Music to the new single licence.

In November 2019, Andrea Gray took the helm as managing director. She quickly looked to ensure that PPL PRS was seen as a prominent member of the Leicester business community and an employer of choice for the city’s abundance of creative and talented jobseekers.

East Midlands Chamber chief executive Scott Knowles said: “While many parts of our economy are facing challenges right now, it’s great to see a company like PPL PRS showing no signs of tempering its determination to grow as a business.

“It’s a great example of the diverse nature of our region’s economy and is already an important employer in Leicester.

“We’re proud to have PPL PRS join as a strategic partner and look forward to forming a close working relationship.”

PPL PRS launches Restore the Rhythm campaign

The announcement coincides with PPL PRS launching its Restore the Rhythm campaign, which shows how music can help businesses get back to their best.

As customers, and staff, return to workplaces after lockdown, they may feel anxious or stressed about being in a busy environment or adapting to new processes. PPL PRS is highlighting how music is such a powerful tool, it can create a warm and welcoming atmosphere and could ease anxiety, while also helping to increase productivity and motivation.

By playing music, and purchasing TheMusicLicence, business owners and managers are also helping to sustain those musicians who create and perform the music we all know and love.

And not just the globally recognisable superstars, the money collected by TheMusicLicence goes back to music’s grassroots, the emerging artists, session musicians and songwriters.

The music industry contributed £5.2bn to the UK economy in 2018, and this industry has been particularly hard hit due to the restrictions on live entertainment, and will continue to be for the foreseeable future.

Many musicians rely on their income from performing live, so the revenue from TheMusicLicence is vital to those who create and perform music.


This article features in the October edition of the Chamber's Business Network magazine, which is available to read here.