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Spotify nears 350 million users driven by India

Audio streaming platform Spotify added 25 million users in the December quarter with India being a significant contributor to growth, the company told shareholders.

Spotify’s total monthly active users (MAUs) grew 27 percent year-on-year, from 271 million in the fourth quarter of 2019 to 345 million users in the fourth quarter of 2020. Its premium users grew 24 percent year-on-year from 124 to 155 million, while ad-supported usage grew from 153 to 199 million year-on-year.

“(We) benefited from faster growth in India, US, and Western Europe, with India serving as a notable source of upside vs. our forecast driven by successful marketing campaigns. Based on the behavior we see when users first join Spotify, we are confident that podcast usage has been a factor in the accelerated net additions,” Spotify told shareholders in a statement.

Total revenue grew 17 percent from $1.85 billion to $2.17 billion year-on-year, while gross profit grew 21 percent from $474 million to $575 million.

By region, Europe is still the Sweden-founded company’s largest, accounting for 35 percent of total MAUs, while North America and Latin America account for 24 percent and 22 percent, respectively. It doesn’t classify Asia, Africa, and Australia separately, and hence Rest of the World accounts for 19 percent of users.

Spotify’s growth in India has been driven by its Spotify Premium Mini, where for Rs 7 or 25 users can have daily or weekly subscriptions to ad-free music and download up to 30 songs on a device.

Non-music exclusive content, primarily podcasts, are a key part of Spotify’s strategy globally as well. In the December quarter, it had 2.2 million podcasts, compared to 1.9 million the previous quarter, and 25% of its monthly users engaged with podcast content in the fourth quarter compared to 22% in the third quarter. “We continue to see strong growth in podcast consumption, with consumption hours in Q4 nearly doubling since Q4 2019. We have increasing conviction in the causal relationship between the growth in podcast consumption driving higher LTV (lifetime value) and retention among our user base,” Spotify said. Money Control

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