Published: Sun, April 08, 2018
Industry | By Dora Warner

Spotify says two million users depend on unauthorized apps to remove ads

Spotify says two million users depend on unauthorized apps to remove ads

A week before its Wall Street debut, Spotify is painting a fairly rosy financial picture for the remainder of 2018, complete with double-digit increases in revenue and paid subscribers to go along with smaller losses.

The technology said yesterday that it expects revenue to grow between 20 and 30 per cent to as much as €5.3bn (£4.6bn) in 2018, a rate slower than the 39 per cent jump recorded for a year ago.

Streaming music leader Spotify Technology SA on Tuesday filed for a direct listing of its shares.

And though revenues per user have been in decline, it expects operating losses to narrow after they rose previous year.

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But millions of users have been bypassing the monthly fee of $9.99 to enjoy Spotify Premium service effortlessly by using old-fashioned ad-blocking applications. However, the company is also anticipating a negative impact of about €95-105 million (US$ 117-130 million) in this quarter due to "changes in foreign exchange rates".

The streaming music giant shared its quarterly and yearly outlook in its latest Securities & Exchange Commission filing, published earlier in the week, including a prediction of between 92-96 million paid premium subscribers by the end of 2018, up 30-36% year on year.

In its guidance Monday, the company predicts this year's revenue to reach $6.1 billion to $6.5 billion. It is targeting 198 million to 208 million total active users by the end of the year.

Spotify marks the breakthrough for the European technology startup market, being the first company in decades to excel and defend its niche - streaming music against the United States giants Apple, Amazon and Google.

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Spotify, as previously reported, will begin trading on April 3.

Its operating loss was expected to come in between 230 and 330 million euros, down from 378 million in 2017.

Spotify said there are now 71 million subscribers paying the monthly premium. That remains well off its long-term target of 30 to 35 per cent.

Its debut on the stock market will differ from the usual format, as the company will not issue any new shares.

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