Spotify looks at audiobooks, ticket sales for next business – The Hollywood Reporter

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Spotify Chief Financial Officer Paul Vogel cited the company’s early ticketing efforts as a way to monetize the music streaming and podcast company.

The company has recently been experimenting with selling tickets to listeners, and on August 10 launched a ticketing website for select artists. Speaking at the Evercore ISI Technology Conference on Wednesday, Vogel said early efforts were popular with artists and helped increase listening hours for that artist on Spotify.

“The artists were really excited about the presales we did and how we targeted and sold tickets to their biggest fans and engaged that audience,” Vogel said. “We also saw that when people buy tickets through Spotify, they like to listen to more of that artist on Spotify.”

Vogel did not share how much money Spotify makes from ticket sales, as Vogel said of the tests to increase the platform’s average revenue per user. The company has recently defended its business case as investors continue to question Spotify’s continued profitability through investments in podcasting and other areas.

At Spotify’s investor day in June, the company said it expects its podcasting business to turn a profit in one to two years, with a peak in 2022 as a drag on margins. On Wednesday, Vogel reiterated that vision and the vision of his podcasting business as a way to help user retention and engagement.

The next challenge in that arena will be in the audiobook business, which Vogel says the company will begin testing and testing “very soon.”

“It will come out reasonably soon, but I would say don’t expect that to be the last change or improvement we make to the audiobook offering,” he said.

In July, Spotify reported that the company paid subscribers in the second quarter, more than its own estimates, and advertising revenue continued to grow even as other digital companies showed a slowdown.

Vogel said the company saw the final weeks of the second quarter as weaker for advertising than most quarters, but did not see “anything” related to the fall in the second quarter. In the third quarter, the company continued to see that “up and down trend,” but Vogel said executives feel the business is “very strong.”

That resilience comes from a relatively low price point, as well as a stable number of competitors and a tendency for users to stick with one music service.

It comes after the company said it would cut its hiring pace by 25 percent amid growing “uncertainty” in the global economy.



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