image market – business trends 2019 (Germany)

Berlin, 1st April 2019 -

While the total number of German picture agencies is declining, the majority of member companies of the Federal Association of Professional Picture Providers continues to record rising revenues. This is one of the results of the 2nd big industry survey “image market – business trends 2019  of the German Association of Professional Image Providers (BVPA) in cooperation with the study course Photojournalism and Documentary Photography of the Hanover University of Applied Sciences and Arts under the direction of Prof. Lars Bauernschmitt.

This year’s survey of German photo agencies focused not only on questions of corporate structure but also on strategies and perspectives of photo providers.

These are some selected results: ·

  • 60% of the picture agencies participating in this survey were founded in 1980 or later and are thus less than 40 years old.
  • What is striking is the decreasing proportion of agency start-ups over the years since 1980.
  • While the largest company participating in the survey had 33 full-time employees, 16 part-time employees and 10 freelancers, in the case of the three smallest companies in terms of the number of employees these were only the owners of the respective company. ·
  • 75% of the agencies define themselves as specialised agencies (specialised in one or a few topics).
  • 70% of the participating agencies do not sell royalty-free images and do not plan to do so in the future.
  • 30% of the photo agencies participating in this survey offer royalty-free images, only half of them want to expand these offerings. ·
  • The majority of the agencies are planning to invest in expanding their business over the next three years, as well as expanding their network of photographers and opening up new domestic markets.

In cooperation with Prof. Lars Bauernschmitt, the BVPA is thus continuing the research work begun last year in order to reduce existing information deficits on the German picture market and the situation of picture providers. “We are pleased to have found in Prof. Lars Bauernschmitt a partner who not only collects statistical data on the picture market, but who is also able to classify and evaluate them on the basis of his almost thirty years of experience on the picture market,” says BVPA Chairman Torsten Hoch.

On the basis of the positive response, the BVPA and the photojournalism and documentary photography course at the Hanover University of Applied Sciences and Arts have decided to continue their cooperation and are considering ways of expanding the surveys.