In conversation with IMRO

May 23, 2024

+44 (0)116 253 0203

We recently launched our brand-new music publishing service Horus Music Publishing. As part of our new venture, we formed direct deals and relationships with various collection societies across the world. We’re delighted to introduce you to one of our partners IMRO. IMRO, otherwise known as the Irish Music Rights Organisation, is a PRO headquartered in Ireland. We recently had the pleasure of catching up with the team at IMRO for an exclusive interview. We discuss who IMRO are, their service and the wider music publishing industry.


Can you give us a brief overview of what IMRO is?

IMRO administers the performing right in copyright music on behalf of its members (songwriters, composers, and music publishers). We also administer on behalf of members of the international overseas societies that are affiliated to it.  IMRO’s core function is to collect and distribute royalties arising from the public performance of copyright works. This refers to royalties generated from live performances, radio and TV broadcasts, online (streaming, video on demand and social networks etc).  With a global scope, we represent creators along the chain of creation. At IMRO, we are committed to creators. We stand up for music and the people who make it and perform it. A community for creators, we listen, advocate, educate, invest, and engage to shape a culture of musical worth. We help music creators to adapt to change and receive a full and fair return for their work. Learn more here.


Is IMRO available to artists outside of Ireland?

Yes. IMRO membership is open to songwriters, composers and music publishers irrespective of where they are located.  We have many members, writers and music publishers based all over the world. Through our affiliated agreements with our sister societies we are well positioned to protect our members’ interests worldwide.  IMRO has almost 25,000 members based in over 120 countries worldwide.  We do not apply any membership fees. IMRO is free to join, and there are no hidden deductions from member earnings.  Join online here.


Can you outline the difference between a PRO and a publisher?

Music publishers and Performance Rights Organisations (PROs) play distinct but complementary roles in managing and monetising musical compositions. Music publishers are responsible for administering the rights to compositions. They work closely with songwriters to promote their music, negotiate deals, and collect royalties. They provide services such as copyright registration, song pitching, and royalty collection, taking a percentage of the royalties earned from the exploitation of the songs they represent. On the other hand, PROs specialise in collecting and distributing royalties for the public performance of musical compositions. They track performances of songs across various platforms and venues, including radio, TV, streaming services, and live performances, collecting royalties from these sources and distributing them to songwriters and publishers based on the performances of their works.


What are the top 3 benefits of choosing IMRO as your PRO?

A major incentive for music creators to choose IMRO over other PROs, is that IMRO does not apply any additional administration charges on overseas public performance royalty earnings. Most other performing right organisations apply additional administration charges on overseas public performance royalties before passing royalties on to their members. These additional fees can typically range from 2% – 8% across the PRO network.  IMRO takes the view that the local performing rights organisation in the territory where the work has been performed has already applied an administration charge and identified who has written the work, so IMRO members should not be penalised again by adding on an additional administration charge.

IMRO issues royalty payments to its members on a monthly basis (for overseas royalties, invoiced live performances, unmatched performances and adjustments), making it one of the most efficient societies in the world. Most other societies do so on a quarterly or less frequent basis. In fact, IMRO is on track to distribute monthly royalty payments for online performances of our members works by the end of 2024, making it a market leader for the frequency and transparency of distributions for royalties from this source.

IMRO members have direct access to a named team member in our distribution and membership departments who will deal with any queries that might arise throughout the year. This ensures a focused personal level of customer service.  Most other collection societies are not in a position to offer this level of direct contact.


What would you say is the most common misconception of music publishing?

A common misconception is that signing with a music publisher guarantees instant success and fame. While a good publisher can certainly help promote a songwriter’s music and secure opportunities for their songs, success in the music industry is never guaranteed. Signing with a publisher is just one step in a songwriter’s career, and success still depends on factors like talent, marketability, networking, and luck. It’s important for songwriters to understand that even with a publisher, they need to continue honing their craft and actively promoting themselves in order to succeed in the highly competitive music industry.


What is your top piece of advice for independent artists looking to enter the world of music publishing?

My top piece of advice for independent artists looking to enter the world of music publishing is to educate yourself about the basics of music publishing and copyright. Understanding how music publishing works, including the different types of royalties, rights, and agreements, will empower you to make informed decisions about your career. Take the time to learn about copyright law, licensing, and the role of PROs such as IMRO. There are plenty of resources available online, including books, articles, and courses, that can help you gain this knowledge.

Secondly, consider forming partnerships with reputable music publishers or music publishing administrators. While it’s possible to self-publish your music, working with a publisher can provide valuable expertise, connections, and resources that can help you advance your career. Look for publishers who specialise in your genre and have a track record of success with independent artists. Before signing any agreements, make sure to thoroughly review and understand the terms, including how royalties will be split and what rights you’re granting to the publisher.

Lastly, continue to focus on creating high-quality music and building your fanbase. Ultimately, the strength of your songs and your connection with your audience are what will drive your success in the music industry. Utilise social media, streaming platforms, and live performances to promote your music and engage with your fans. The more you can grow your audience and generate interest in your music, the more attractive you’ll be to potential music publishers and industry professionals.



If you’re looking for a trusted music publisher to start your publishing journey, look no further! Horus Music publishing is available for artists and songwriters across the globe. For as little as £3 per month, click here to get started today.

Got questions? You can contact our team direct here.

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