Podcast listening app and web-streaming audio service Stitcher is set to shut down on August 29, after 15 years of operation, with the past three years under the ownership of Liberty Media’s SiriusXM. The closure is part of SiriusXM’s plan to migrate subscribers to its flagship SXM app, according to a notice posted on Stitcher’s website.
The “Stitcher Farewell” notice states, “SiriusXM, the owner of Stitcher, is focused on incorporating podcasts into its flagship SiriusXM subscription business. Subscribers can listen to podcasts within the SiriusXM app, and will see an all-new listening experience later this year.”
“The scale and reach of our widely-distributed podcasts has been and remains a crucial accelerant for our advertising sales business, while incorporating podcasts more holistically into our flagship SiriusXM subscription service will help to drive further growth,” Chief Product and Technology Officer Joe Inzerillo, Chief Advertising Revenue Officer John Trimble, and Chief Content Officer Scott Greenstein said in a joint statement.
As part of the shutdown, Stitcher will also be discontinuing its ad-free Premium service, which was priced at $4.95 per month or $34.99 per year. The availability and accessibility of shows exclusive to Stitcher Premium will be determined by the hosts and creators, as stated on the company’s website.
Not all aspects of Stitcher will cease to exist. The company intends to continue operating its Stitcher Studios and Earwolf networks, which produce original podcasts. Additionally, SiriusXM assures podcast enthusiasts that they will still have access to ad-supported versions of shows that were previously available on Stitcher, but on other platforms.
Stitcher has experienced several ownership changes since its launch in 2008. In 2016, E.W. Scripps’ Midroll Media division acquired Stitcher for $4.5 million. Later, in 2020, SiriusXM acquired the platform in a deal valued at nearly $325 million.
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.
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.”
Fox News Begins 2024 Atop Key Digital Media Demographics
Fox News finished its 35th consecutive month atop the multiplatform minutes rankings, with 3.3 billion minutes according to a report from Comscore.
Fox News Digital began 2024 by sitting atop the rankings in several key demographics in the digital media landscape.
In multiplatform views, the outlet tallied 1.7 billion, with The New York Times scoring 1.5 billion. That marked the 16th consecutive month Fox News Digital finished on top.
6 million unique visitors visited the conservative cable outlet’s mobile app, which bested CNN, which tallied 5.4 million unique visitors.
Political Ad Spending Sees Highest Levels in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco
AdImpact has tracked 465 unique political ads across broadcast stations. In the 209 markets being monitored, political ads have aired a combined 87, 536 times.
As the 2024 election season continues to take shape, political advertising is seeing large gains in three major metropolitan areas.
AdImpact has tracked nearly $110 million in political ad spending over the past two weeks, with the largest recipients of those figures being Los Angeles ($13.2 million), New York ($10.5 million), and San Francisco ($7.2 million).
Thus far, the highest-spending advertisers are the Adam Schiff for Senate campaign, as the current representative vies for the spot vacated by the death of Diane Feinstein. The campaign has spent $8.1 million.
Additionally, the American Values PAC — a political action committee supporting Democrat Robert F. Kennedy Jr. — spent $7.2 million.
Finally, the Yes on Prop 1 in California campaign — which will attempt to tackle mental health issues in the state — has spent $5.4 million in advertising.
In total, AdImpact has tracked 465 unique political ads across broadcast stations. In the 209 markets being monitored, election ads have aired a combined 87, 536 times.