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Amazon agrees to buy podcast startup Wondery


#Amazon.com #Inc. said it has agreed to acquire podcast producer #Wondery, the online retail giant’s latest move to beef up its audio offerings.

#Amazon didn’t disclose the purchase price. The #Wall #Street #Journal earlier reported that the talks valued #Wondery at more than $300 million.

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#Founded in 2016, #Wondery is one of several audio startups that blossomed in recent years as podcasting caught on with advertisers and listeners. #Wondery is known for its gritty, narrative-driven podcasts that apply cinematic sound design to nonfiction stories.

#Amazon said acquiring #Wondery — the maker of true-crime shows like “#Dr. #Death,” “#Dirty #John” and “The #Shrink #Next #Door” — would allow the company to deepen its podcast offerings.

#Wondery podcasts will continue to be available to listeners on a variety of platforms for free when the deal closes, #Amazon said. #Wondery will be joining #Amazon #Music, the division of the company that offers listeners music-streaming and podcasts.

#Several other podcast startups have been acquired in recent years as technology, radio and news companies seek new listeners. #Spotify #Technology SA recently bought #Gimlet #Media, the #Ringer and #Parcast, expanding its capacity for producing and monetizing podcasts.

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#Dow #Jones & #Co., publisher of the #Journal, has a content partnership with #Spotify’s #Gimlet unit.

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#Last year, radio company #Entercom #Communications #Corp. purchased podcasters #Pineapple #Street #Media and #Cadence13. #And earlier this year, the #New #York #Times announced the acquisition of #Serial #Productions, maker of the hit podcast “#Serial.”

#Wondery #Chief #Executive #Hernan #Lopez will be leaving the company after the deal closes, according to people familiar with the matter. #Jen #Sargent, the company’s chief operating officer, will take over management of #Wondery upon #Mr. #Lopez’s departure, the people said.

#After the deal closes, #Mr. #Lopez will focus on the #Hernan #Lopez #Family #Foundation, a new initiative aimed at combating systemic bias and racism, the people said.

#In #April, #Mr. #Lopez was charged with participating in an alleged scheme to pay millions of dollars in bribes to soccer officials in exchange for broadcasting rights when he was an executive at #Fox #Sports. #Mr. #Lopez has denied the charges. A lawyer for #Mr. #Lopez, #Matthew #Umhofer, told the #Journal earlier this year that the U.S. indictment “alleges nothing remotely improper.”

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The subsidiary where #Mr. #Lopez worked, #Fox #International #Channels, was absorbed by #Walt #Disney #Co. in 2019. #Amazon didn’t comment on the charges against #Mr. #Lopez. #Fox said in a 2017 trial that it didn’t know about or approve any bribes. #Fox declined to comment. #Disney didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

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The #Journal’s parent #News #Corp. and #Fox #Sports parent #Fox #Corp. share common ownership.

#Wondery’s funders include #Waverley #Capital, #Advancit #Capital, #Lerer #Hippeau and #Greycroft. #Its last funding round, in #June 2019, valued the company at more than $100 million, the #Journal reported. #It is on pace to increase its revenue to more than $40 million this year.

#LionTree LLC advised #Wondery on the deal.



[ source link ]
https://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/amazon-agrees-to-buy-podcast-startup-wondery

##Amazon #agrees #buy #podcast #startup ##Wondery

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