Spotify Makes Major Podcast Push With Gimlet Media and Anchor Acquisitions

February 6, 2019, 1:38 PM UTC

Spotify is expanding its portfolio with a special focus on podcasting.

The audio-streaming service on Wednesday announced that it will acquire podcast producer Gimlet Media and podcast technology company Anchor. Terms of the deals were not disclosed, but the company said in a statement that the acquisitions will allow it to both a “producer of podcasts” and a “platform for podcast creators.” Reports last week suggested Spotify would spend $200 million on Gimlet Media.

In a blog post, Spotify co-founder and CEO Daniel Ek said that he believes his company needs to expand beyond music and become a destination for all types of audio. He added that over time, he believes 20% of all Spotify listening will go to non-music audio, like podcasts.

This means the potential to grow much faster with more original programming—and to differentiate Spotify by playing to what makes us unique—all with the goal of becoming the world’s number one audio platform,” Ek said.

Gimlet Media is one of the leading podcast companies in the industry. It has a slew of popular shows that focus on everything from entrepreneurship to science, including Startup, Homecoming, and Reply All.

Anchor, meanwhile, provides tools for podcast producers to create content. The company hosts audio content, helps creators monetize their shows, and allows for quick distribution of content to podcasting apps.

Looking ahead, Ek said that the company plans to expand its podcasting efforts and focus on “curation and customization” of content. Spotify also hopes to improve monetization to help creators make more money off their shows. But when it’s all said and done, Ek believes the move will position Spotify as more than just a streaming music service.

“If we are successful, we will begin competing more broadly for time against all forms of entertainment and informational services, and not just music streaming services,” Ek said. “We welcome this.”