SiriusXM Holdings is close to buying the popular podcast player Stitcher, the Wall Street Journal reports. Stitcher is owned by EW Scripps and made $17.1 in revenue in the last quarter. The purchase price is said to be $300m.
Scripps bought Stitcher in 2016 for $4.5m and then combined it with Midroll Media, the podcast-advertising company that it acquired the year before for $50m. The company also owns Omny Studio and Triton Digital that offer monetization tools for podcasters.
SiriusXM is an American broadcasting company that provides satellite radio and online radio services in the US. It was formed by the 2008 merger of Sirius Satellite Radio and XM Satellite Radio.
SiriusXM is now working to expand into the rapidly growing podcasting industry, like Spotify. SiriusXM already owns Pandora (a US-only music service and podcast app acquired in 2018), AdsWizz (an audio ad-tech company), and Simplecast (a podcast hosting service). It is already working with Walt Disney Co.’s Marvel Entertainment to create exclusive podcasts for the company’s satellite radio and streaming services.
Stitcher offers a free podcast listening app with a premium subscription that lets subscribers listen to podcasts without ads. It also owns podcast networks including Earwolf and Stitcher Podcasts, Via its Midroll Media unit, Stitcher also distributes and sells advertising for more than 250 podcasts.
According to the Interactive Advertising Bureau, ad revenue from podcasts in the US rose an estimated 42% to $678.7 million last year and will exceed $1 billion by 2021.