STOCKHOLM - Spotify Technology SA beat Wall Street estimates for second-quarter revenue on Wednesday, as the music streaming company reported a 20% jump in paid subscribers for its premium service driven by demand in Europe and North America.
The top end of the company's current-quarter forecast for revenue and premium subscribers were also ahead of expectations.
Spotify forecast revenue of 2.31-2.51 billion euros, and 170-174 million premium subscribers. Analysts on average were expecting revenue of 2.39 billion euros and 170.4 million subscribers.
COVID-19 continued to weigh on its performance in several markets, but revenue from its ad business, which last year took a hit due to the pandemic, grew 110% to 275 million euros.
Spotify has also been investing heavily in its podcast business to rival that of Apple and in April launched a paid subscription platform for podcasters in the United States.
The company currently has 2.9 million podcasts on its platform and podcast share of overall consumption hours reached an all-time high in the quarter.
Its podcasts by personalities such as Joe Rogan and Bill Simmons continue to draw more users.
Revenue rose to 2.33 billion euros ($2.75 billion) for the quarter from 2.15 billion a year earlier, above the 2.29 billion expected by analysts, IBES data from Refinitiv showed.
Premium subscribers, which account for most of the company's revenue, hit 165 million, matching analysts' expectations.
Total monthly active users rose 22% to 365 million.
The company reported a net loss of 20 million euros, or 19 euro cents per share, improving on a loss of 356 million euros or 1.91 euros per share a year earlier and beating the loss of 37 euro cents expected by analysts.
Spotify shares were up 3.5% in premarket trading.
($1 = 0.8460 euros)
(Reporting by Supantha Mukherjee, European Technology & Telecoms Correspondent, based in Stockholm, editing by Helena Soderpalm and Jason Neely) ((email@example.com; +46 70 721 1004; Reuters Messaging: firstname.lastname@example.org))