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Spotify knows our listening habits have changed — but it's not crying about it

Thursday, April 30, 2020 by Robinhood Snacks |
_Weekend vibes over at Spotify_

Weekend vibes over at Spotify

"Every day now looks like the weekend”... Dope quote straight out of Spotify corporate. Because of WFH, lockdown life has all but erased commuting habits — so our listening habits have changed too:

  • Podcast listening is down, especially in cars and on smartwatches. Buuut — Spotify listening through TVs and game consoles is up more than 50%. Despite the dip, Spotify didn't lose any paid subscribers or monthly users. In fact...
  • Spotify grew its paid subscribers by 31% since last year — it now has 286M monthly users (some on the free version) and 130M paying subscribers. The result was a fresh $490M profit (its 2nd ever).

Same biz, different biz model... Spotify and Netflix are both content streamers with monthly subscriptions that cost roughly the same price. And they're both relieved that they haven't been hit by the corona-conomy. But unlike Netflix...

  • Spotify doesn't own/create much of its content — the record labels do. So Spotify has to share revenue with companies that rep the musicians in your playlist.
  • Spotify has a free version supported by ads — that makes it more vulnerable to the ad-pocalypse: its ad sales dropped 32% since last quarter. Still...
THE TAKEAWAY

Spotify has no reason to play "sad vibez" playlist... Despite a few pandemic-related hiccups, Spotify's 1 key metric (paid subscribers) is looking good: paid subscribers grew 31%, which is better than last quarter's 29% growth — and that's what investors are looking at. Spotify's stock soared 12% on the earnings beats.