Spotify’s instant popularity in India helps boost global revenue

Spotify’s instant popularity in India helps boost global revenue
Photo Credit: Photo Credit: Pixabay
30 Apr, 2019

Spotify signed up more than two million users in India within two months of launching in the country, helping the music streaming giant boost it global revenue.

“We launched India in late-February expanding our global market footprint to 79 countries,” Spotify said in a statement while announcing its earnings for the quarter ended March 31, 2019. “More than 1 million users signed up for Spotify in our first week in the market, and growth has continued to outpace our expectations. We now have more than 2 million users in India.”

Overall, the Sweden-headquartered company’s monthly active users (MAU) grew 26% year-on-year to 217 million.

The company currently has more than 100 million premium subscribers worldwide. It said its total revenue for the first quarter of 2019 grew to €1.51 billion from €1.49 billion in the previous quarter and up 33% year-on-year.

The company’s operating expenses of €420 million increased 30% year-on-year while operating losses totalled €47 million, yielding an operating margin of 3.1%, thanks to its higher gross profit and lower-than-expected marketing spend, the company said.

Daniel Ek-led Spotify had listed its shares on the New York Stock Exchange in April last year.

In India, Spotify offers its music services in English, Hindi, Punjabi, Tamil and Telugu. It launched its service on both web and mobile applications, pricing the subscription at Rs 119 per month.

It has faced some hurdles in India around licensing. Most recently, it agreed to remove music offered by major label Saregama.

Spotify competes with other well-funded music streaming services in the country such as Apple Music, Amazon Prime Music, JioSaavn, Gaana (backed by Times Internet and Tencent), Wynk (backed by Airtel).

Google-owned YouTube officially launched its music streaming service YouTube Music in India last month.

India has an estimated 220 million music streaming users. According to global management consulting firm The Boston Consulting Group, 70% of revenue from India’s music market comes from digital services, pegging it at a $100 million opportunity. This is estimated to grow to $500 million by 2020.