It’s been almost three decades since in-house vinyl pressing was on the agenda at Sony, but with vinyl sales outstripping digital downloads for the first time ever last year, the company has reevaluated and announced the opening of their own in-house vinyl pressing facility.
As BBC reports, Sony will kick their vinyl production back into gear in Japan, relaunching a Tokyo factory by March next year to usher in their first in-house pressing since 1989.
While digital sales and streaming now account for over half of Sony’s revenue, physical sales still contributed 33.7% to the cause in 2016, worth $1.2b, with an increasing portion of that figure due to renewed interest in their vinyl offerings.
Global vinyl revenue, meanwhile, is forecast to hit upwards of $1b on its own, and Australia has now seen a steady increase in vinyl sales for six years running.
As BBC notes, it’s an interesting move from a company who are known for pushing forwards into new technologies and formats, having pioneered the compact disc and then the MiniDisc, not to mention their involvement in the home video wars with the failed Betamax system.
The move was foreshadowed by the introduction of a cutting lathe to its Tokyo studio several months back, in order to be able to produce master records locally.
No announcements have been made as to what records will be produced at the new facility, but Sony have so far been putting out a steady stream of new records and classic re-releases.