British Phonographic Industry


May 23, 2022

The British Phonographic Industry (in English British Phonographic Industry, also known by its acronym BPI) is the association in charge of representing and defending the business and interests of the distribution companies and producers of phonograms in the United Kingdom. BPI represents hundreds of UK phonogram production and distribution companies, with around 400 members today, making up 90 per cent of the UK record market. It was founded as such in 1989; however, since 1973 it has been present in the British market, and is currently a member of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI).[1]

Activities and services

The BPI is in charge of satisfying and defending the interests of the companies that are members of the association, for this the BPI works in three different areas, which are: protection, promotion and representation and support.[2]


BPI offers its members copyright protection on phonograms based on the law, so the BPI fights piracy by having a special anti-piracy unit, which is involved in hundreds of investigations and operations annually to prevent the production and marketing of pirate phonograms. In serious cases of criminality, the BPI offers its members support to take legal action against offenders. As protection actions, BPI is also responsible for preventing piracy through the Internet, specifically in peer-to-peer systems, with which it is responsible for preventing pirated material from infiltrating and being distributed through the network.[1]


In terms of promotional activities, the BPI is responsible for profiling British music both within the country and abroad, thus becoming the most representative body of British music internationally. As part of the promotional work, the BPI organizes the BRIT awards that reward the best of British music, likewise BPI is co-owner of The Official UK Charts Company, through which it presents results of radio popularity and record sales such as albums, singles , DVD, etc which is a great promotion for British music. BPI also presents annual sales reports, and the contributions that these sales represent to the British GDP and to recognize the sales, it grants record sales certifications to the artists. Thus, BPI acts as a national reference body and international representative of British music.[2]

Representation and support

BPI is responsible for representing its member companies before other associations and government agencies, including providing support to its members before the law. The BPI also has several publications which are totally free for its members and provide data and balances on the music industry in the United Kingdom, which is a great advantage. In the United Kingdom, there is also a large number of independent and small record companies that cannot compete with large transnational companies, so the BPI is responsible for creating an environment of respect and equality for all record companies in the country.[1]


BPI has been awarding record certification awards since April 1973, based on phonogram sales. The rating for albums was initially based on the revenue received by the manufacturers, and in January 1978 the BIS abolished the old monetary system for albums and replaced it with a system of unit sales (records), which is how the current system is. Most music associations award their certifications. The multi-platinum awards, introduced in February 1987, are to certify more than once an album which can double, triple, etc. the amount imposed for the