A profitable pureplay music-streaming service? Don’t fall off your chair in wonder at the thought. Napster is the company in question: it reported a net profit of $4.4m for the first quarter of 2018, compared to a net loss of $5.6m in the corresponding quarter of 2017.

That’s the good news, but now for the not-so-good news: Napster’s revenues also fell fairly sharply year-on-year. The streaming service generated $40.3m of revenues in Q1 2018, down 15.1% from the $47.5m it reported for Q1 2017. These figures come from the latest quarterly financial results of RealNetworks – published in early May – which continues to hold a 42% stake in Rhapsody International Inc, which now does business as Napster.

“We are pleased with the results we’ve achieved due to changes implemented over the last year, including appointing Bill Patrizio as Chief Executive Officer and refocusing the company on business-to-business opportunities,” RealNetworks boss Rob Glaser told analysts at the time the results were published.

“Indeed, the first quarter 2018 marks Napster’s third consecutive quarter of positive operating income. We’re pleased to see the successful IPO by Spotify, which we think will help establish the value of businesses such as Napster in the marketplace.”

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