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Spotify swings to profit as user numbers grow

Music streaming giant Spotify said it registered 26 percent growth in active users for the third quarter as it reported a rare quarterly profit.

Spotify posts a rare quarterly profit thanks to a jump in paying subscribers
Spotify posts a rare quarterly profit thanks to a jump in paying subscribers - Copyright AFP/File Jim WATSON
Spotify posts a rare quarterly profit thanks to a jump in paying subscribers - Copyright AFP/File Jim WATSON

Music streaming giant Spotify on Tuesday said it registered 26 percent growth in active users for the third quarter as it reported a rare quarterly profit.

“Truly stellar quarter. Improving step by step,” Spotify CEO Daniel Ek said in a post to X, formerly Twitter.

The 26 percent growth in monthly active users compared to the third quarter a year earlier saw the total reach 574 million.

The additional 23 million users represented the “second largest” net addition for the third quarter in the company’s history.

Spotify said it expects to exceed 600 million active users by the end of the year.

The company also saw a 16 percent rise paying subscribers, which make up the bulk of the company’s revenue, to 226 million.

Revenue rose 11 percent to 3.4 billion euros ($3.6 billion), while operating profit came in at 32 million euros compared to a loss of 228 million for the same period a year earlier.

In early June, Spotify announced it would be cutting some 200 positions working with podcasts.

That move came after a January announcement that Spotify was cutting around 600 jobs — equalling about six percent of its workforce — following similar moves by other tech industry giants.

In July, the Swedish company, which is listed on the New York stock exchange, announced it was raising its prices for premium subscribers “across a number of markets around the world,” following in the footsteps of similar moves by competing music services from Apple and Amazon.

Spotify has invested heavily since its launch to fuel growth with expansions into new markets and, in later years, exclusive content such as podcasts.

It has invested over a billion dollars into podcasts alone.

In 2017, the company had around 3,000 staff members, more than tripling the figure to around 9,800 at the end on 2022.

The company has never posted a full-year net profit and only occasionally quarterly profits despite its success in the online music market.

AFP
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With 2,400 staff representing 100 different nationalities, AFP covers the world as a leading global news agency. AFP provides fast, comprehensive and verified coverage of the issues affecting our daily lives.

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