More Podcasting Acquisitions Announced

Entercom, one of the biggest US radio corporations, announced this month that it has acquired two big names in podcasting: Pineapple Street Media, a content network, and Cadence13, an ad distribution platform and production company.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the Pineapple deal is worth $18 million, and the Cadence13 deal cost Entercom nearly $50 million. Pineapple Street will change its name to Pineapple Street Studios and will focus on creating shows and working with partners like Netflix and HBO. Cadence13 will continue to operate as is and work with its clients, like Crooked Media and Malcolm Gladwell’s Pushkin Industries.

Entercom owns more than 235 radio stations across the US that reach 170 million listeners each month. This deal sets it up to compete with iHeartMedia, one of the biggest names in radio. Last year, iHeart acquired Stuff Media, the podcast network behind HowStuffWorks, for $55 million. Since then, iHeart has launched multiple podcasts, including the Ron Burgundy Podcast with Will Ferrell.

The move suggests that the radio industry is taking serious notice of changing consumer behaviour - fewer and fewer people own radios, radio apps are no longer preinstalled in phones, and more people are turning to podcast apps. The changes have been so rapid that acquiring digital audio companies seems like a much likelier route to commercial success than trying to rebrand.

 

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James Bishop