Get to know your licences

Do you know the difference between an entertainment licence and a music licence?

We all know playing music in a venue can be beneficial to your business. Undeniably in many cases, it’s vital. Obviously ensuring the sound system is spot on, and your playlist will have been designed with your clientele in mind are also essential.

Music creates a mood. As a result, the music you play can be as much a part of the reason your customers are loyal as your food, drinks or décor. Additionally, music can encourage conversations, that vital connection between your staff and clients.

However it’s not just your customers who benefit from music being played either. Your colleagues will too! Music can add a burst of energy to a team who have been on their feet all day.

entertainment and music licence
Now, imagine your bar or restaurant without that music. Not quite the same environment is it? A business without music can fall flat, seem lifeless and cold.

Your equipment and music choices are obviously a crucial element to your operation. But additionally, you also need to ensure that you are correctly licensed to play that music.

There is some confusion between an entertainment licence and a music licence. However, with the launch of TheMusicLicence, PPL PRS hope to ease this confusion and educate business owners on being correctly licensed for the music they play.

So, first things first… do you need TheMusicLicence to play music in your venue even if you have an entertainment licence that allows you to play music? In short, yes you do and here is why.

An entertainment licence is issued by your local authority. It gives you permission to provide entertainment on your premises. It may be subject to certain conditions such as time restrictions or number of people attending.

TheMusicLicence is issued by PPL PRS. TheMusicLicence gives you permission to play music which is subject to The Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. Consequently, this means that you don’t have to spend your time and energy contacting potentially hundreds of thousands of rights-holders – those people who create music – to get permission to play or perform their music in your business.

Obtaining TheMusicLicence gives you 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.

So, hopefully this will help you to distinguish between TheMusicLicence and an entertainment licence that are required to entertain your customers and guests with music and live events.

With TheMusicLicence, playing music in your pub or bar could cost you as little as 99p per day*. You will be safe in the knowledge that you are licensed to play background music via radio and TV which can improve your brand, help your customers to feel welcome and valued and could also increase staff morale.

And now we are making it even easier for you to buy TheMusicLicence.
Previously businesses needed to buy two separate music licences. One from PPL and one from PRS for Music. These two bodies have listened to their customers and formed a new joint venture – PPL PRS Ltd – and created TheMusicLicence. What this means for you is that you can now buy and renew your music licence in one place, with one contact and one invoice. Simple!

*Example based on using music via the TV or radio in a pub or bar that is 400sqm or less. Combined yearly pub and bar music licence could cost around £363.06 (excluding VAT).

January 2022



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