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Ed hits 10 billion UK streams!

Ed Sheeran has been announced as the first British artist to receive a special-edition Gold BRIT Billion Award by the BPI, the representative voice for the UK’s world leading record labels and music companies.

The Gold BRIT Billion award celebrates Ed’s landmark achievement in being the first British artist to surpass 10 billion career streams in the UK – as calculated by the Official Charts Company. Over one billion of those streams came in the last 12 months alone. He was presented the Award by musician, actor, and presenter, Jordan Stephens, most well known for being one half of Rizzle Kicks, and host of the BRITs Red Carpet Treatment Podcast. 

One of the UK’s most loved voices, Ed has made Official Charts history countless times, breaking records including becoming the first artist to have four albums in the Official Albums Chart Top 10 for a year, and the first British solo artist to claim a full year at No.1 across his catalogue on the Official Singles Chart. 

With an untarnished streak of six UK No.1 albums, seven BRIT awards, and 14 UK No.1 singles, Ed recently broke the ticket record playing his Mathematics tour for 81,000 fans at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles. He currently holds three of the 10 most-streamed songs of all time with Shape of You (#2), Perfect (#3), and Bad Habits (#9). His latest album Autumn Variations dropped on 29th September and is his second this year following the chart-topping success of ‘-‘, released in May. 

Ed Sheeran said: 
"It’s wonderful to receive the first-ever BRIT Billion Award in the UK for 10 billion streams. I want say a big thank you to my fans. None of this is possible without you guys x"

Dr. Jo Twist OBE, BPI Chief Executive, said:
“We congratulate Ed Sheeran and his team on this landmark achievement. Ed may represent the pinnacle of streaming success, but he is also among the thousands of artists who are being streamed in the tens and hundreds of millions in the UK each year and who are thriving thanks to streaming and label support. We look forward to honouring many more artists, including future talent, with a BRIT Billion award.”

Officially launched on 4th May 2023, the first wave of 13 artists to receive the BRIT Billion award included global icons ABBA, Coldplay, Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston, pioneering rap and hip-hop artists AJ Tracey and Headie One, and chart-dominating pop artists and singer-songwriters Anne-Marie, Ellie Goulding, George Ezra, Lewis Capaldi, RAYE, Rita Ora and Sam Smith. Recent recipients include Billie Eilish, Lana Del Rey, who was presented with the award backstage at her BST Hyde Park headline show, Olivia Rodrigo, Queen, Wizkid, Becky Hill, and James Arthur, who was presented with his award live on BBC’s The One Show.

The BRIT Billion award reflects the extent to which streaming has transformed the music landscape for artists and fans alike over the past decade – around 85% of the UK’s recorded music consumption now takes place through streaming, and in 2022 there were a record 160 billion audio streams in the UK in total. 

More than 2,000 artists now annually amass at least 10 million audio streams of their music in the UK, while nearly 10,000 artists are streamed over a million times.  However, meaningful commercial success is today measured in the hundreds of millions, and more than 200 artists exceed 100 million audio streams in the UK each year.  Their music is, of course, streamed even more globally, and UK artists on average are streamed up to eight times more internationally as they are in th UK.  Ed Sheeran was the most-streamed UK artist globally in 2022 and was one of more than 400 UK artists to achieve over 100 million audio streams worldwide last year (based on BPI research/Luminate data).

Photo by David J Hogan/Shutterstock