Sirius is paying $325 million for an E.W. Scripps podcast unit that includes, among other luminaries, Oprah Winfrey’s network.
The move comes as the satellite-radio company looks to keep up with Spotify. Sirius says that following the acquisition, the company will reach the largest addressable audience in the U.S. across all categories of digital audio – music, sports, talk and podcasts.
“The addition of Stitcher is an important next step as we continue to develop and strengthen our offering in the fast-growing podcasting market,” said Sirius Chief Executive Jim Meyer in a statement.
“With Stitcher, we will expand our digital audio advertising presence and look to generate new ways for creators to find and connect with their audiences.”
The purchase comes after Sirius’s recent acquisition of podcast management and analytics platform Simplecast. Sirius said that podcasters would benefit from the transaction through “enhanced production, marketing and promotion capabilities.”
“While there are considerable risks to this strategy given the costs associated,” the note said, “the underdeveloped nature of the podcast market, and challenges forecasting the financial impact to long term revenue and profit growth, … the optionality these efforts create leave the risk/reward in owning Spotify in a favorable position, even when accounting for its recent outperformance.”
For Scripps the deal price produces “a return of more than double Scripps’s investment in podcasting over the last five years,” the company said in a statement.