Sami Valkonen sees global opportunities for ICE

International expert Sami Valkonen recognised the wider international potential of the ICE copyright database at tech summit.

PRS for Music’s director of international was addressing an audience at the Music Week Tech Summit 2019 yesterday (Tuesday), who had gathered at the o2, London for the panel Embracing the International Opportunity.

He said: ‘The biggest opportunity for us is utilising the ICE copyright database in a broader geographical way than it is currently.’

Valkonen highlighted that the online licensing and royalty processing organisation ICE has a database that is currently utilised across Europe, but stressed its global potential as an increased source of revenue for creators.

He continued: ‘I’m sure many of you know, licensing in the digital sphere, typically, is pan European, i.e. we use our database and we license our repertoire across Europe. It is not yet global.

‘However, if you look at the key digital services, they are all global. When there is usage of YouTube in Vietnam, do we want the Vietnamese society to try to identify PRS repertoire from that usage? Or do we want to use the ICE database, which has the absolute accurate up to date, correct information on it? Of course, it’s the latter.

‘So, I’m seeing that the opportunity for us as it relates to international is to move and broaden that scope. I think we’re moving into South East Asia, I’m hoping relatively soon, at least I’m pushing for it,’ he added.

ICE was founded by PRS for Music, Swedish collecting society STIM and German rights organisation GEMA, and in August reported it had paid out more than €1bn (£907m) to music creators and publishers since its inception in 2016.