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Spotify got 30% more MAUs in India than expected

Spotify got 30% more monthly active users in India than what it had forecast for the quarter ended September 30, 2019. Spotify had 2 million registered users in India as of March.

Spotify’s monthly active users (MAU) grew 30% to 248 million globally, significantly driven by developing regions, such as Latin America and Southeast Asia, which is Spotify’s fastest growing region globally. MAU growth was also driven by “product innovation driving improvements in long-term retention”, including rollout of Spotify Lite in emerging markets, improvements in quality of recommendations for new users, and the seven-day trial. Premium subscribers grew 31% to 113 million globally.

  • Total revenue of €1,731 million, up 28% YoY
  • Premium outperformed with 29% increase YoY to €1,561 million
  • Ad-Supported was weaker than forecast, growing 20% YoY at €170 million

Spotify expanded its free trial to 90 days, on par with Apple Music, in August. But the change did not have any material impact on subscriber growth this quarter. CEO Daniel Ek said the move is simply an improvement in the overall offering, and brings Spotify in line with the competition.

Spotify CFO Barry McCarthy will step down on January 15, 2020 and is likely to join the company’s board. Paul Vogel, who is currently Spotify’s VP and Head of Financial Planning & Analysis (FP&A), Treasury and Investor Relations will replace McCarthy.

Podcasts

The company saw a 39% growth over last quarter of podcast hours streamed “albeit off of a small base”, which the company said is an early indication that podcasts will convince some users to switch to premium. 14% of Spotify’s total monthly active users now listen to podcasts, the US accounts for the highest number of podcast streams, but share of listening is higher and growing faster in several European countries. Spotify’s library contains 500,000 podcast titles.

Competition

  1. Spotify is adding roughly twice as many subscribers per month compared to Apple Music. The company said its monthly engagement is roughly 2x as high and churn is at half the rate.
  2. The company said that it is adding more users than Amazon on an “absolute basis’”. Spotify said that Amazon’s user base skews significantly more to ‘Ad-Supported’ than ‘Premium’. The average engagement on Spotify is approximately 3x.

Download: Earnings release | Earnings call transcript

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