Spotify's growth continues with 406 million active users, $3.03 billion revenue in Q4

The company added 20 million new users in Q4 and expects to reach 418 million total users in Q1.
Written by Jonathan Greig, Contributor

Spotify released its fourth quarter results on Wednesday, reporting a year-over-year revenue increase of 24% and a more than 20 million increase in monthly active users compared to Q3.

The audio platform reported fourth quarter revenue of $3.03 billion and 406 million monthly active users. Spotify also said it had a Q4 loss of $44.1 million, or 21 cents a share. The report sent shares sinking nearly 12% in after-hours trading.

Premium revenue grew 22% year-over-year to $2.594 billion while ad revenue grew to $445.3 million. 

Wall Street was expecting Spotify to report fourth quarter revenue of $2.98 billion.

For the full fiscal year of 2021, the company reported revenue of $10.9 billion and an annual loss of $38.4 million.


Premium subscriber figures grew to 180 million and by the end of Q4, the company saw a double digit increase in the number of monthly active users that listened to podcasts. 

"Among MAUs that engaged with podcasts in Q4, consumption trends remained strong (up 20% Y/Y on a per user basis) and podcast share of overall consumption hours on our platform reached another all-time high. We also expanded our paid podcast subscriptions to creators and listeners in 33 additional markets and enabled podcasts for users in Russia, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia," the company said. 

The company has faced significant backlash in recent weeks over a controversy surrounding the Joe Rogan's podcast, which has been accused of spreading misinformation about COVID-19 and other topics. Multiple headlining artists -- including Neil YoungJoni Mitchell, and David Crosby -- demanded their music be removed from the platform. 

Rogan has since apologized for the controversy and pledged to make changes to how he books his guests. Spotify also said it would make changes to direct people to accurate COVID-19 information. 

For Q1, the company is expecting to reach 418 million monthly active users, 183 million total premium subscribers, and $2.9 billion in revenue. Many noted that the company did not provide an annual outlook after thousands of people pledged to cancel their accounts following the Rogan controversy. 

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