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The man who couldn’t be bought…has been bought. Spotify announced on Tuesday that it has finalized a deal to make The Joe Rogan Experience Podcast a Spotify exclusive.
Starting at the end of the year, Rogan’s entire podcast library will be solely available on the Swedish streaming platform. Yes, that includes his YouTube videos. Sorry freeloaders. The deal wasn’t fully disclosed, but it’s believed to be worth upwards of $100M. That includes milestones and performance metrics. But once you hit $100M, who really cares how you get it?
Since it’s a licensing deal, Rogan will not be considered a Spotify employee, so he can still say whatever he wants. He still records in America after all.
Joe Rogan is nothing if not vocal, and in the past he’s made his distaste for Spotify well known. He’d previously stayed away from putting his show on the streamer, citing Spotify’s lack of pay to artists. But before we praise the former Fear Factor host for his principles, Rogan has raking in cash from the likes of 23andMe, Dollar Shave Club, and ZipRecruiter. And of course he offers free ads for whoever makes DMT.
The bottom line…
Spotify is full send in its quest to be synonymous with podcasts. Currently, the platform is the largest music streaming service by subscription, and The Rogan Experience will only help that claim. Rogan’s YouTube channel alone has more than 8.4M followers, and his videos frequently hit the 1M mark in views. As of last week, Rogan’s podcast was the 2nd most downloaded on Apple’s podcast platform.
Beyond the JRE, Spotify has been making moves to build its podcast offering through straight up acquisitions. It spent hundreds of millions of dollars to buy up The Ringer, and Gimlet Media, a popular podcast production company.
It seems like a smart investment too, as podcast ad dollars grew 42% last year. And you can bet people locked in their houses for three months will give those numbers a nice little nudge too.
On the news, Spotify shares climbed 10% before closing up 8.4%.
Water Cooler Talking Point(s)
💧 “If you had Joe Rogan sells out amidst a global pandemic on your 2020 bingo board, you’re a g*ddamn liar.” (AJ, The Water Coolest HQ)
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