Spotify is continuing its investments in podcasts with today's news that it has acquired another podcast technology company, Whooshkaa, an Australia-based all-in-one platform for hosting, managing, distributing, promoting, monetizing and measuring podcasts. The deal follows Spotify's earlier acquisitions in the podcast technology market, including last year's deal for hosting and ad company Megaphone, and, more recently, podcast discovery platform Podz.
With Whooshkaa, Spotify is gaining a new tool: specialized technology that allows radio broadcasters to easily turn their existing audio content into on-demand podcast programming. This is the part that most interested Spotify, which says it will integrate this "broadcast-to-podcast" tech directly into Megaphone -- the latter which already offers a suite of hosting, distribution, reporting and monetization tools for podcasters.
Spotify believes Whooshkaa's porting capability will bring more third-party content to its Spotify Audience Network, which would increase the reach and impact for its advertising partners. This part of Spotify's business has been scaling upwards. The company passed the €1 billion in advertising revenue milestone in 2021 and Spotify reported its highest ad revenue quarter ever in Q3.
Today, 1 in 5 Spotify advertisers are using the Spotify Audience Network and opted-in Megaphone podcast publishers have seen a double-digit increase in fill rates, Spotify says.
Launched in 2016, Whooshkaa has also innovated in areas like text-to-speech, speech-to-text, connected home integration, ad technology with dynamic insertion, enterprise-grade private podcasting tools and more, the Australian firm's CEO Rob Loewenthal noted in its own announcement on the company blog. However, Spotify -- with its over 381 million monthly listeners -- allows Whooshkaa to bring its technology to a larger audience.
"We believe the worldwide growth potential for digital audio is still largely untapped. Through the addition of these new tools as well as the innovative team behind them, we are reinforcing our commitment to helping creators, publishers, and advertisers realize the value of this opportunity," said Spotify's Chief Content & Advertising Business Officer, Dawn Ostroff, in a statement about the deal. "With Whooshkaa, we will strengthen our efforts to help audio publishers of all kinds grow their podcast business and scale our ability to help advertisers reach their audiences."
Spotify declined to share the deal terms, and couldn't yet comment on the transition plan for Whooshkaa's existing customers. A total of 12 people will be joining Spotify as a part of this deal, and they will remain based in Australia.