Mercury Records will no longer release CD and vinyl versions of singles and plans to rely almost completely on digital downloads.
The company plans to only create physical versions when it is guaranteed to make a profit. Last year, Mercury Records lost money on their physical versions. Higher manufacturing costs, discounting and the cost of dealing with excess stock has made producing the 45rpm single more costly, and there is less of an audience for the product than there used to be.
Singles that have already been scheduled will be released, as well as singles from Yuck, The Fixers and Patrick Wolf.
A spokeswoman for Universal Music, Mercury’s parent company, said: “For the past couple of years we have released physical singles only when there is demand and with physical formats now accounting for just over 1% of the overall singles market we are being more cautious.
“That said, physical singles are not disappearing and we will still release them when there is a demand – for example The Wanted’s single for Comic Relief and forthcoming seven inch vinyl singles for Yuck and White Lies.”