Abu Dhabi-based Anghami's first-half revenue jumps 29% on growth in subscribers

The music streaming company says the number of active users climbed 46% on an annual basis to 19.5 million

Anghami sign on Raouche, Pigeons' Rock. In Beirut, Lebanon. Courtesy Anghami
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Anghami, the Arab world's music streaming rival to Spotify, reported a 29 per cent rise in first-half revenue, as its subscriber base continued to grow.

Revenue for the six-month period to the end of the June climbed to $21.1 million, Abu Dhabi-based Anghami said in a statement on Tuesday.

The number of active users jumped 46 per cent on an annual basis to 19.5 million. The company’s monthly paying subscriber base grew 41 per cent year-on-year to 1.28 million.

Anghami said half-yearly growth was driven primarily by “higher conversion rates of advertising-supported users to paying subscribers, as well as a higher number of active users”, that resulted in increased advertising and subscription revenue.

Overall first-half revenue, however, was affected by a negative foreign currency impact of $3.5m, excluding which revenue would have increased by more than 50 per cent annually on constant exchange rates basis.

"The first-half results should lead to a record year for Anghami in 2022,” said Eddy Maroun, co-founder and chief executive.

Anghami, which listed its shares in February, reported an operating loss of $13.6m last year on “significant costs” to licence content and payment royalties to music labels. However, the company's revenue in the first quarter of this year grew by 23 per cent, driven by a boost in its premium subscriber base.

The company, which distributes its application through smartphone and tablet app download stores managed by Amazon, Apple, Google, Microsoft and others, said Arabic content was key to Anghami’s growth.

During the first half, Anghami announced several deals to strengthen its position as a leading provider of digital Arabic content and entertainment in the Middle East and North Africa.

In February, the company announced an exclusive partnership with Egyptian singer Amr Diab, the most-streamed artist on the Anghami platform, to bring his entire audio and video catalogue, as well as future releases, exclusively to its platform.

“We continue to listen to the needs of our loyal users by expanding our local Arabic content and improving our technology-enabled digital streaming platform,” Mr Maroun said.

“These are the key drivers that will maintain Anghami’s leadership position in the Arabic music [industry].”

Last month, Anghami acquired Spotlight Events, a company that specialises in creating and managing live events and concerts in the Mena region, to help create one of Mena’s top digital entertainment platforms. It currently has a planned pipeline of more than 10 concerts this year.

Boosted by Anghami’s investments in Arabic content, the total number of music streams on the Anghami platform reached a record in the first half of 2022. Arabic music streams accounted for nearly 60 per cent of the total, marking a 20 per cent year-on-year increase, the company said.

"Anghami remains committed to launching more innovative offerings, expanding its global reach and delivering value to customers,” said F Jacob Cherian, co-chief executive of Anghami.

“We are confident that this positive trajectory will continue through 2022 as we benefit from our growing partnerships and offerings."

Anghami, which has partnerships with 41 telecom operators across the region, established its global base and research and development centre in Abu Dhabi Global Market last year, as part of the Abu Dhabi Investment Office's $545m innovation programme.

Adio has provided Anghami with financial and other incentives to set up at the ADGM, allowing it access to a competitive talent pool and established infrastructure.

Updated: August 17, 2022, 3:09 PM