Press release

Nineteen of the UK’s most promising music acts and songwriters receive support to amplify their sound abroad

Business Secretary announces the latest UK music acts to receive government funding to export their music abroad.

  • government continues to back music exports as UK music now accounts for 1 in 7 albums sold globally
  • Music Export Growth Scheme to help acts from across the UK achieve global recognition including SOAK and The Temperance Movement

Business Secretary Sajid Javid today (4 July 2015) announced the latest UK music acts to receive government funding to export their music abroad.

Now in its second year, the Music Export Growth Scheme (MEGS) provides funding to boost sales of British music around the world by financially supporting small and medium sized independent music companies in their overseas activities. Included on this round’s list are 2 BBC Sound of 2015 shortlisted artists, this year’s Hot Press Most Promising Act in Ireland and a forthcoming support act for the Rolling Stones.

Commenting on the scheme, Business Secretary Sajid Javid said:

Music is a defining part of British culture, from the British Invasion in the 1960s to 90s Britpop. I joined the music faithful at this year’s Glastonbury, witnessing first hand our country’s musical talent and the passion of festival-goers come rain or shine.

Through the Music Export Growth Scheme, the government is banging the drum for the UK’s fledgling music stars and promoting the UK’s world-class sound in overseas markets. The scheme highlights the strength of the UK’s creative industries and the benefits they deliver to the UK economy.

Over the last 18 months the Music Export Growth Scheme - which is run by UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) and UK music body BPI - has awarded support to 89 independent music companies across England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. According to estimated figures from BPI, this has generated an approximate return on investment of £8.50 for every £1 invested.

The artists and songwriters that will benefit from the latest round of funding are:

  • 65daysofstatic (Sheffield)
  • Ciaran Lavery (Belfast)
  • Dr Meaker (Bristol)
  • Eska (London)
  • Fearless Vampire Killers (Suffolk)
  • Låpsley (Merseyside)
  • Lonelady (Manchester)
  • Maribou State (Hertfordshire / Leeds)
  • Marika Hackman (London)
  • MONEY (Manchester)
  • Oh Wonder (London)
  • Songwriters Paul Drew (Croydon), Pete Barringer (Isleworth), and Pete Boyes (Essex)
  • Sam Lee (London)
  • SOAK (Derry, Northern Ireland)
  • The Temperance Movement (London)
  • Until The Ribbon Breaks (Cardiff)
  • While She Sleeps (Sheffield)

In this sixth round of funding, the 16 acts and 3 songwriters will receive grants ranging from £8,000 to £15,000. The monies will be matched by the music companies behind the acts to pay for items such as overseas marketing, session musicians, tour support, booking agents and other expert services in the territories that the artists hope to tour. The songwriters will attend writing camps overseas to help boost the revenues that come from publishing and sync deals.

BPI and BRIT Awards Chief Executive, Geoff Taylor, explained the importance of the scheme to British music:

The Music Export Growth Scheme backed by BPI and UK Trade and Investment has played a pivotal role in launching the music careers of artists overseas. Since its launch, it has seen alumni such as Public Service Broadcasting, Young Fathers, and Catfish & the Bottlemen sell out shows in the US, Australia and Europe.

With 1 in 7 artist albums around the world now accounted for by British acts, we know the UK’s independent and major labels are at the top of their game in finding the most promising acts to develop. It’s an exciting time for British music and the BPI is backing it all the way.

Music Export Growth Scheme recipient Eska said:

I am very thankful for the support of UKTI and BPI which will enable the promotion of my album and open opportunities to tour in Europe.

The critical acclaim garnered by my debut album and live performances in the UK has already been generating interest internationally and without this vital and timely support, it would not be possible to pursue any of these exciting performance opportunities.

The announcement follows news that British artists now account for 1 in 7 of all artist albums sold around the world, signalling the most successful year on record for British music overseas.

Independent artists played their part in strengthening the performance of British music globally. Records from Arctic Monkeys, Passenger and Alt-J boosted sales in North America; albums from London Grammar and former MEGS-funded band, Metronomy, proved popular in France; and The Heavy and Aphex Twin experienced chart success in Japan. Newcomers FKA Twigs and Jasmine Thompson also flew the flag for British music internationally.

The Music Export Growth Scheme will re-open for applications on 6 July 2015.

Notes to editors

  1. Enquiries about the Music Export Growth Scheme:
  2. Media enquiries:
  3. Images of the music acts can be downloaded from Dropbox.
  4. Download a video featuring artists from the latest round
  5. UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) is the government department that helps UK-based companies succeed in the global economy. We also help overseas companies bring their high quality investment to the UK’s economy – acknowledged as Europe’s best place from which to succeed in global business. UKTI offers expertise and contacts through its extensive network of specialists in the UK, and in British embassies and other diplomatic offices around the world. We provide companies with the tools they require to be competitive on the world stage.
  6. BPI represents the UK’s recorded music industry, which is one of the most exciting and thriving music sectors in the world. British artists account for 1 in 8 albums purchased by fans around the globe. As a trade body, they champion the interests of its members which includes more than 300 independent music companies and the UK’s major record companies. Together, BPI’s members account for 85% of all music sold in the UK. BPI organises the BRIT Awards show and the Classic BRIT Awards show from which substantial proceeds go to the BRIT Trust – the BPI’s charitable arm – which has donated almost £20 million to charitable causes nationwide since its foundation in 1989.
Published 4 July 2015