(Ed Sheeran. Photo by John Marshall)
IFPI, the organisation that represents the recorded music industry worldwide, has named Ed Sheeran as the world’s best-selling recording artist of 2017, reflecting the unparalleled, record-breaking success of his third studio album ÷ (Divide) and its singles including the global smashes Shape of You, Castle on the Hill, Galway Girl and Perfect.
Released in March 2017, Ed Sheeran’s ÷ was the global best-selling album of last year and has been certified as multi-Platinum in 36 markets. Shape of You was the best-selling single globally of 2017 and has been certified as multi-Platinum in 32 markets. It is the first time that the IFPI Global Recording Artist of the Year has had both the best-selling album and single of the year.
Ed Sheeran is the fifth recipient of the IFPI Global Recording Artist of the Year Award; the unique and authoritative accolade that reflects an artist’s worldwide success across digital and physical music formats, from streams to vinyl. Previous recipients of this prestigious award are One Direction (2013), Taylor Swift (2014), Adele (2015) and Drake (2016).
Max Lousada, CEO of Recorded Music for Warner Music Group & Chairman and CEO of Warner Music UK, says: “Being crowned the biggest star in the world, with the biggest song and biggest album, is the result of years of ambition, creativity, and hard work on a global scale. Ed is truly an incredible songwriter, vocalist and performer, whose ability to tell stories and make people feel is what stands him out from the crowd. He’s always had a totally authentic connection with his fans, something he places over everything else. Congrats also to Stuart Camp, the Atlantic teams in the UK and US, and everyone at Warner who contributed to Ed’s amazing success story.”
IFPI Chief Executive, Frances Moore, comments: “It’s wonderful to be able to announce Ed Sheeran as the IFPI Global Recording Artist 2017. The success Ed has achieved is astonishing and testament to his ability to write and perform songs that connect with a truly global fanbase.
“This year’s Global Top 10 really is a ‘who’s who’ of popular music. Each artist has a unique impact on the music industry through the talent and energy they are channelling through their work. I congratulate them all for such a successful year.”
Drake, recipient of the award in 2016 takes second place after a successful year which saw his More Life mix tape break records for the most streams in 24 hours for an album on Apple Music and best first-day streams for an album on Spotify.
Taylor Swift’s sixth studio album, Reputation, which was released in November 2017, has helped the artist take third place. Reputation debuted at No.1 on the Billboard 200 chart and has since topped the charts in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, the UK and US.
The IFPI Global Recording Artist of the Year Award and top 10 chart was the first, and remains the only, ranking to accurately capture the engagement with artists across audio streaming channels, alongside digital and physical album and singles sales on a global basis.
The independently verified IFPI Global Recording Artist of the Year chart includes sales of albums – across digital, CD and vinyl formats; singles, both downloaded and physical; and on-demand audio streams across the calendar year.
The chart includes all the music of each artist featured, not just one track or album. It uses album equivalent units to combine measurements of downloads, physical sales and streams.
Notes to editors:
BDO LLP has independently verified that IFPI has compiled the IFPI Global Recording Artist of the Year Chart correctly in line with certain agreed upon procedures.
The full IFPI charts for global top 10 albums of 2017 and global top 10 digital singles of 2017 will be published in the IFPI Global Music Report 2018, released on 24 April 2018.
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