- Spotify has acquired The Ringer, Bill Simmons’ sports and entertainment company, for an undisclosed amount.
- The deal is the latest in a string of acquisitions from Spotify to expand into podcasting.
- The Ringer has nearly 40 podcast titles and will also continue to run its website.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
On Wednesday, Spotify confirmed that it is buying The Ringer, the sports and entertainment brand founded by Bill Simmons.
Rumours of the deal were first reported by The Wall Street Journal in January.
The Ringer runs a sports and pop-culture site but has made a hard push into podcasts. The company has nearly 40 podcasts, including “The Bill Simmons Podcast” and shows about the NBA and NFL. As part of the deal, Spotify plans to acquire The Ringer’s staff, website, and podcast catalogue.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but it is expected to close in the first quarter of 2020.
The deal is the latest in a string of acquisitions that Spotify has made in recent months to grow its podcast business. Last year, Spotify paid $US340 million to buy Gimlet Media and Anchor to expand from streaming music to content. Spotify also acquired podcast studio Parcast last year.
“As we set out to expand our sports and entertainment offerings, we wanted a best-in-class editorial team,” Dawn Ostroff, Spotify’s chief content officer, said in a statement. “Bill Simmons is one of the brightest minds in the game and he has successfully innovated as a writer and content creator across mediums and platforms. The Ringer’s proven track record of creating distinctive cultural content as well as discovering and developing top tier talent will make them a formidable asset for Spotify.”
Simmons is a former ESPN commentator who launched The Ringer in 2016. According to The Wall Street Journal, The Ringer made more than $US15 million from podcast advertising in 2018.
For more on Spotify and the podcast industry, read our coverage on Business Insider Prime:
- Meet the 29 power players of podcasting who are pushing original audio production forward as the industry surges toward $US1 billion in ad revenue
- 4 ways to make more money from your podcast and maximise downloads, according to a top producer