Spotify now has 144 million premium subscribers thanks to new markets

Spotify added more subscribers in the third quarter on Thursday than Wall Street expected and forecast strong growth for the current quarter as more users tuned in to the streaming music service.

With more than double the number of subscribers as its closest rival, Apple Music, Spotify has grown rapidly in markets across Europe following its launch in India and the Middle East last year.

Premium subscribers, who account for the majority of sales, rose 27 percent year over year to 144 million. According to Refinitiv’s IBES data, analysts expected an average of 142.5 million paid subscribers. Monthly active users rose 29 percent to 320 million.

For the fourth quarter, the company expects total premium subscribers in the 150 to 154 million range. Analysts had expected a value of 151.5 million.

Spotify attributed the increase in subscribers to its recent launch in new markets such as Russia, which it viewed as its “most successful launch” to date.

The company, which earns from paid subscriptions and serving ads to non-paying users, was able to get its advertising business back on track after the global pandemic hurt ad growth earlier in the year.

Revenue for the quarter rose 14 percent to 1.98 billion euros (approximately 17,268 billion rupees). According to IBES data from Refinitiv, analysts expected sales of 2 billion euros (around 17,442 billion rupees).

Excluding the impact of foreign exchange rates, Spotify said quarterly sales were “a little better than expected”.

© Thomson Reuters 2020

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