Apple reportedly mulls acquisition of podcast network Wondery

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Apple recently held acquisition talks with podcast producer Wondery, which is looking to sell itself for between $300 million and $400 million, according to a report Friday.

Citing sources familiar with the matter, Bloomberg reports Apple, Sony and two unnamed companies are in discussions to buy Wondery, producer of podcasts like "Bunga Bunga" and "Dr. Death." Talks are ongoing, but the podcaster is looking to seal a deal in the coming months.

According to podcast monitoring firm Podtrac, Wondery's network draws some eight million listeners a month. The producer holds rights to a slate of content that can be remodeled for mainstream media platforms, and is already using its podcast lineup to develop more than a dozen TV shows, the report said.

The firm also has ties to Apple, with one podcast, "WeCrashed: The Rise and Fall of WeWork," being adapted for Apple TV+.

Music streaming leader Spotify, which is making an aggressive push into podcasting, is reportedly not interested in placing a bid.

The talks come amid a concerted effort from Apple to build out its podcast offerings, including a rumored stable of original podcasts. In May, reports indicated that the tech giant was looking to hire a content executive to develop audio spinoffs of Apple TV+ shows and original podcasts that could later be adapted to the subscription video service.

Apple has made podcast related acquisitions in the past, including podcast search engine creator Pop Up Archive and, more recently, content curation specialist Scout FM. It is also said to be on the hunt for exclusive rights to existing podcasts.

Apple was a major force in establishing podcasting more than a decade ago (the term is derived from audio content made for consumption on iPod). After leaving the platform to grow organically, the iPhone maker in recent months has showed a renewed interest in the medium and is consistently updating its Podcasts app with new features.

 

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