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South African Music Performance Rights Association

The communication of sound recordings to the public is a restricted activity and requires a license from SAMPRA for the use of sound recordings in its repertoire. SAMPRA regulates the use of music and sound recordings to the public in shops and stores, such as

(But not limited to) SUPERMARKETS, DEPARTMENTAL STORES, CLOTHING STORES, LIQUOR STORES, ETC. when background music is used.

The difference between SAMRO and SAMPRA.

SAMPRA pays out Needletime royalties to artists and record labels whereas SAMRO distributes Performance royalties.


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SAMPRA – South African Music Performance Rights Association South African Copyright Act (Act 98 of 1978, as amended)
and Performers Protection Act (11 of 1967, as amended)

Description / Interpretation

SAMPRA is a collective management organization (CMO) that administers Needletime Rights (music is played in public, may it be direct and or background music) on behalf of recording artists and record labels.

Neighbouring/Needletime Rights of the record company and recording artist to receive royalties whenever their commercially released tracks are used in public, by any Entity and or Business for any purposes directly, and or as background music to the public in South Africa.

Needletime/Neighbouring Rights royalties are music royalties paid to record companies and recording artists whenever their commercially released tracks are played by licensed music users such as radio broadcasters, retailers, clubs, pubs, restaurants, etc.
Licensed Music Users

Everyone loves music, especially customers that visit your business or use your services. Numerous studies have shown that music enhances the ambiance in every business. So, whether you are a broadcaster, a store owner, someone in hospitality, entertainment, or a jack of all trades, a SAMPRA License shall help you to continue giving your customers the very best ambiance that enables them to shop, relax and have the best memories. A SAMPRA License offers you unlimited access to the world’s best original tracks, sung by original artists, from the oldest to the latest. Nothing compares to original music, sung by original artists, in a way the music was meant to be sung.

A SAMPRA Licence guarantees that your business will never have to deal with unnecessary litigation related to Neighbouring Rights. Your license and annual licensing fee save you from breaking the law. When you pay your license fees, you can be certain that all the recording artists that were part of the music that makes your business thrive, will also thrive because your fees enable SAMPRA to pay them, as well as record companies who own those tracks, their Neighbouring Rights royalties.


A SAMPRA (South African Music Performance Rights Association) License or Application is not transferable at the change of ownership (When the Business is Sold) or relocated from one premise to another (When the Business is moved). The SAMPRA License is “Renewable” annually, by the Metropolitan Councils, Local Town Municipalities, or District Councils, depending on the geographical area and by-laws of the Council and or Municipality.