One Direction and Ed Sheeran led a record breaking year for British artists in 2014, who had five of the top 10 best-selling albums worldwide. More than one in seven albums sold worldwide last year were by British artists, giving them a record 13.7% share of the global market.

one directionOne Direction’s Four was the highest selling British album of 2014.

One Direction led the way with Four, which was the biggest-selling album by a UK artist in 2014, with 3.2 million in global sales. The boyband came in second over all and were only beaten by Taylor Swift’s 1989 which sold six million copies worldwide.

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In third place was Ed Sheeran with X, while Coldplay followed on fourth place with Ghost Stories. Veterans Pink Floyd came in seventh place with The Endless River, while newcomer Sam Smith was at number eight with In The Lonely Hour. The year also saw record numbers for vinyl sales, which reached a 20 year high in the UK with 1.3m sales, thanks to Pink Floyd’s return and Arctic Monkeys’ AM.

“UK artists and labels dominated sales at home like never before, releasing all of the top 10 best-selling artist albums of 2014,” said Geoff Taylor, chief executive of BPI, the trade body which represents the UK’s record labels

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”Music is a tremendous exports success story for the UK – all around the world, fans are listening to the records we produce, supporting not only our balance of trade but a positive image for Britain overseas,” Taylor added. “It’s encouraging to have a government that backs British music exports and understands the key role music plays in projecting Britain’s identity as a creative powerhouse.”