Amazon to acquire American podcast maker Wondery

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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American eCommerce giant Amazon is acquiring US-based podcasting network Wondery, in a deal that will improve the audio content of the company.

Wondery, which was founded four years ago with support from US-based film studio Twentieth Century Fox, will now become part of Amazon Music, the music streaming subsidiary of the eCommerce giant that added podcasts to its website recently.

“When the deal closes, nothing will change for listeners, and they will continue to be able to access Wondery podcasts through a variety of providers,” Amazon said in a statement.

“With Amazon Music, Wondery will be able to provide even more high-quality, innovative content and continue their mission of bringing a world of entertainment and knowledge to their audiences, wherever they listen,” it added.

The agreement helps Amazon to extend its current original audio content collection and strengthen its competitive position against Apple and Spotify, which have doubled their investment in podcasts.

The tech giant said that through this partnership, it seeks to “accelerate the growth and evolution of podcasts” by bringing creators, hosts, and immersive experiences to listeners across the globe.

“This is a pivotal moment to expand the Amazon Music offering beyond music as listener habits evolve … we will continue to bring more customers to streaming as we expand the selection,” the company said.

The global demand for podcasts is thriving. According to Grand View Research, a San Francisco-based market research and consulting firm, the industry was estimated at $9.28 billion last year and is projected to expand at an annual rate of 27.5 percent from 2020 to 2027.

Wondery, the maker of hits such as Dirty John, Dr. Death, The Shrink Next Door, and Business Wars, raised $10 million in a Series B funding round in June last year, in an agreement that priced the podcast network at more than $100 million.

“We are excited to announce we have signed a deal to join Amazon. Together with Amazon, we look forward to continuing to bring a world of entertainment and knowledge to you,” Wondery said, adding that the agreement is still to be finalized with the transaction subject to customary closing conditions.