SiriusXM has revealed plans to revamp its spoken word content delivery as it seeks to expand its digital business. The company is now considering new ways to combine live radio shows and on-demand podcasts to cater to the preferences of its subscribers.
Jennifer Witz, CEO of SiriusXM, said the company is “rethinking” its approach to spoken word content delivery and believes there are opportunities to provide a better listening experience for its customers.
“With strong similarities between talk radio and podcasts, we can do more to seamlessly integrate them across our service and provide more control and discoverability for subscribers,” Witz said Thursday.
SiriusXM has merged its podcast group with its comedy and entertainment group to form a single unit, according to Witz during a conference call with Wall Street analysts. The move was made during the first quarter as the company looks to streamline its operations and better serve its subscribers.
Kicking off the re-vamped audio vision, SiriusXM has signed a new five-year agreement with Hartbeat, the production company owned by actor and comedian Kevin Hart, to produce and distribute podcasts and broadcast content, according to Inside Radio.
Following the recent departure of cable talk hosts Tucker Carlson and Don Lemon, rumors have surfaced about their potential next moves in the world of podcasting or satellite radio. SiriusXM executives have expressed openness to the possibility of working with both individuals, but no official announcements or confirmations have been made at this time.
“People find their way to our door and we consider a lot of factors,” said Scott Greenstein, SiriusXM’s Chief Content Officer. “One of the things we’re most proud of, is the true diversity of voices we have on the platform, and basically letting our subscribers and listeners and trialers decide what they want to listen to at any given moment.”
Maddy Troy serves as a writer and editor for Barrett News Media, with a specific focus on media business, advertising, and podcasting. You can find her on Twitter @Troy_Maddy.
Warner Bros. Discovery Sees 14% Drop in Ad Revenue in Q4
“This business is not without its challenges.”
Warner Bros. Discovery hosted its fourth-quarter earnings call Friday, and while the company reported hundreds of millions in losses, it was trying to view that as a positive.
The company reported a loss of $400 million, which is down sharply from the loss of $2.1 billion it experienced in the same time frame in 2022.
Additionally, Warner Bros. Discovery — the parent company of CNN — saw a 14% decline in advertising revenue during the final three months of 2023.
“This business is not without its challenges,” Chief Executive Officer David Zaslav said during the company’s fourth-quarter earnings conference call, according to CNBC. “Among them, we continue to face the impacts of ongoing disruption in the pay TV ecosystem and a dislocated, linear advertising ecosystem. We are challenging our leaders to find innovative solutions.”
The comapny did report an 86% increase in free cash flow, which now sits at $6.16 billion.
Jeremy Boreing: Every Outlet ‘Suffering From Facebook’s Massive Shift Away From News’
“Mark Zuckerberg remade the news landscape when he moved his company into the space, and then gutted it when he moved out.”
In recent years, Facebook has shifted its focus away from a news and link-sharing platform to become more focused on social interactions between users. That shift has been detrimental to news publishers, according to The Daily Wire co-founder Jeremy Boreing.
In a statement to Mediaite, the digital media executive wasn’t shy about his stance that the shift from Facebook has been detrimental not only to his organization but to the industry as a whole.
“Everyone is suffering from Facebook’s massive shift away from news. Mark Zuckerberg remade the news landscape when he moved his company into the space, and then gutted it when he moved out,” Boreing said. “A capricious trillion dollar company can crush entire industries without much effort. Daily Wire is disproportionately impacted because we were built with a focus on Facebook. Now, our focus has shifted to more premium content.”
The comments from Jeremy Boreing coincide with a report that conservative digital outlets have seen a dramatic drop in viewership, especially compared to figures seen in 2020. One outlet — Breitbart — has seen a drop in traffic of 87% compared to the tumultuous 2020 year that included the start and heights of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as a contentious presidential election between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.
Court Approves Audacy Reorganization Plan
“We have achieved a speedy confirmation of our prepackaged Plan, which will enable Audacy to pursue our strategic goals and opportunities in the dynamic audio business.”
A United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas has approved a plan for Audacy to reemerge from its bankruptcy proceedings.
Under the plan, Audacy will equitize more than $1.5 billion of funded debt, which reduces its debt load by 80%, down from $1.9 billion to $350 million.
Audacy Chairman David Field was encouraged by the development.
“Today’s announcement marks a powerful step forward for Audacy, positioning the Company for an exciting future,” said David Field, who also serves as the President and CEO of Audacy. “As expected, we have achieved a speedy confirmation of our prepackaged Plan, which will enable Audacy to pursue our strategic goals and opportunities in the dynamic audio business.
“We aim to drive accelerated growth and financial performance, capitalizing on our scaled, leadership position, our uniquely differentiated premium audio content and the robust capital structure that we will have upon emergence,” continued Field. “I also want to express my gratitude to our team, who continue their outstanding work to serve our listeners and customers with excellence and fulfill our commitments without missing a beat.”
A statement from the company claims the restructuring “will enable Audacy to continue its strategic digital transformation and capitalize on its position as a scaled, leading multi-platform audio content and entertainment company differentiated by its exclusive, premium audio content.”