Spotify has beaten expectations for the second quarter as the streaming giant saw its paid subscriber numbers grow by a fifth.
The Swedish company said premium subscribers jumped 20 per cent year on year to hit 165m in its latest quarter – towards the upper end of its guidance and modelty ahead of forecasts.
Monthly active users grew 22 per cent to 365m, but fell short of expectations due to the impact of the pandemic.
While more than half of Spotify’s users are based in Europe and North America, the impact of Covid across several Asian countries including India and Indonesia took its toll.
It comes after Spotify expanded to 85 more countries earlier this year, taking its total footprint to 180 countries.
Despite the pandemic hit, the streamer’s revenue grew 23 per cent to €2.3bn (£2bn) over the quarter.
This was also ahead of forecasts thanks to better-than-expected subscription growth and a rebound in advertising.
It came after fellow tech firms including Facebook, Google, Twitter and Snap all reported bumper profits as ad revenues recovered from pandemic lows.
“The second quarter was a strong quarter for Spotify overall, with the majority of our major metrics performing better than expected,” said Spotify boss Daniel Ek.
“While monthly active user growth was softer than expected in the first half of the year, we are seeing that trendline reverse and all the leading indicators show that we are back on track. By accelerating our pace of innovation and investing for the long term, we continue to cement our standing as the preferred audio platform around the world.”
Spotify has been ramping up its investment in podcasts amid growing pressure from rival Apple, and in April launched a paid subscription platform for podcasters in the US.
The company has 2.9m podcasts on its platform and the podcast share of overall consumption hours reached an all-time high in the quarter.