Storytel meets its forecast for Q4, 2018

During the fourth quarter of 2018, Storytel had on average 768,700 paying subscribers, an increase of nearly 48,000 subscribers compared to the third quarter of 2018, and somewhat higher than the published forecast of 765,000 paying subscribers. Streaming revenue for the fourth quarter of 2018 also beat expectations at app. 291.3 MSEK (as compared to the forecast of 290 MSEK), indicating a 39.2% annual growth rate.

During the fourth quarter of 2018, the average number of Swedish subscribers totalled 345,000, or 4,200 more than forecast. In addition, revenue forecasts were surpassed by approximately 2.5 MSEK, and Swedish streaming revenue totalled 140 MSEK during the fourth quarter of 2018. The increase of subscribers in Sweden was partially spurred on by the introduction of the Family Subscription which was introduced in December. In total, the Swedish subscriber base increased by 52,500 subscribers during 2018, in line with Storytel’s goals for the year.

“After a well-executed effort involving a large proportion of the organisation, we’ve now developed our version of a family subscription plan, which has initially been very well received by our customers. With individual accounts and a special focus on children through our Kids Mode, we’ve developed a solution which we believe fits the entire family. A few weeks after its introduction, we can already see a large number of customers upgrading to the new plan, and we look forward to seeing how it progresses throughout 2019 as we introduce the plan to markets outside of Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Iceland,” says CEO Jonas Tellander.

During the fourth quarter of 2018, the average number of international subscribers was 423,500, slightly lower than the forecast though still in line with expectations, and representing an increase of 39,000 paying subscribers compared to the third quarter of 2018. International streaming revenue totalled approximately 151 MSEK during the fourth quarter of 2018, about one million SEK lower than forecast. During 2018, the total number of international subscribers increased by 182,000.

“During 2018 our annual subscriber growth rate outside of Sweden was 76%, in line with our goals. Our international expansion the last few years has been fairly aggressive, and during the quarter we launched in two new markets Mexico and Bulgaria, all according to our plan of opening in six new markets last year,” says CEO Jonas Tellander.

Key numbers for  Streaming

Currency: thousand SEK        Q3 2017        Q4 2017        Q1 2018        Q2 2018        Q3 2018        Q4 2018
Streaming Total
Revenue 197 881 209 225 222 133 239 139 279 979 291 315
Contribution Profit1 27 784 30 277 24 079 25 045 22 063
Contribution Margin 14,0% 14,5% 10,8% 10,5% 7,9%
Paying Subscribers 503 900 533 400 577 900 621 200 720 900 768 700
ARPU2 (SEK/Month) 131 131 128 128 129 126
 
Streaming Sweden
Revenue 113 709 118 038 122 046 125 759 135 986 139 977
Contribution Profit 32 872 38 501 43 067 35 763 40 888
Contribution Margin 28,9% 32,6% 35,3% 28,4% 30,1%
Paying Subscribers 282 300 292 700 305 100 314 700 336 200 345 200
ARPU (SEK/Month) 134 134 133 133 135 135
Streaming International3
Revenue 84 172 91 187 100 087 113 380 143 993 151 338
Contribution Profit -5 088 -8 224 -18 988 -10 718 -18 826
Contribution Margin -6,0% -9,0% -19,0% -9,5% -13,1%
Paying Subscribers 221 600 240 700 272 800 306 500 384 700 423 500
ARPU (SEK/Month) 127 126 122 123 125 119

1. Contribution Profit is defined as streaming revenue minus costs for content (licensed content and in-house productions) and marketing. Storytel Reader is not included in Streaming.

2. ARPU = Average Revenue Per User (Subscriber) per month

3. Storytel Norway included in figures @ 100%. In the consolidated group accounts Norway is reported according to the principle of proportional consolidation.

For more information, please contact:

Jonas Tellander, CEO: +46 70 261 61 36

FNCA Sweden AB is the company’s certified adviser. FNCA can be reached at info@fnca.se or 08-528 00 399.

This information is such information that Storytel AB (publ) is obliged to make public in accordance with EU:s market regulation (marknadsmissbruksförordning). The information was made public by above contact person on January 8th, 2018 at 08:15 CET.

About Storytel

The Storytel group consists of two divisions, Streaming and Publishing. The Streaming division currently offers a subscription service for audio books and e-books under the brand names Storytel and Mofibo in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, The Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Spain, India, the United Arab Emirates, Turkey, Italy, Mexico and Bulgaria. The Streaming division also publishes audio books and Storytel Originals, mainly through the audio-book publisher Storyside. The Publishing division consists of the publishers Norstedts, Massolit, Printz Publishing, the Danish People’s Press, Storytel Publishing, Rabén & Sjögren and B. Wahlströms, as well as Norstedts Kartor.