Tag Archives: LibSyn

Liberated Syndication Announces John W. Gibbons as President & Chief Product Officer



Libsyn, the industry’s leading podcast hosting platform and advertising marketplace, announced that it has hired John W. Gibbons as President & Chief Product Officer. Mr. Gibbons will be responsible for overseeing the product and innovation team and working closely with the CEO and Board to further Libsyn’s market expansion strategy.

Mr. Gibbons has been at the forefront of the podcast and digital media industries throughout his career. He most recently served as CEO of Pocket Casts, an industry-revered podcast app that was backed by a consortium of investors, including NPR, WNYC, WBEZ, and the BBC, and was acquired by Automattic, the parent company of WordPress.com, in 2021.

Prior to Podcast Casts, Mr. Gibbons spent over a decade with Amazon.com and its subsidiary, The Internet Movie Database (IMDb dot com); following his tenure at Amazon.com, he served as VP of International for Sizmek, a global ad server, preceding its acquisition by Amazon.com. A VC-backed Founder and CEO of a digital-first video company, Mr. Gibbons also helped launch and grow Atom Tickets, an award-winning movie ticket e-commerce app, and has served as an advisor to Podchaser, an industry-leading podcast-discovery database, since its inception.

“We are thrilled to welcome John to the Libsyn team,” said Libsyn’s CEO Brad Tirpak. “John’s background and areas of expertise fit squarely with Libsyn’s mission to deliver the best podcasting platform to our customers. John has a proven track-record of leading businesses in the development of consumer-direct products and creating product-centric organizations. John will be a great asset to the Libsyn team as we continue to innovate, expand our Advertisecast marketplace, and develop monetization offerings for our customers.”

Mr. Gibbons’ career has focused on creating products that empower creators and customers to thrive on growing platforms. Mr. Gibbons spent 13 years at Amazon.com and The Internet Movie Database (IMDb.com), an Amazon company, where he established both the global advertising business and its related products, launched the platform for third-party sales on Amazon, and built strategic partnerships with well-known global brands and Fortune 100 clients.

Also, as a VC-backed entrepreneur, Mr. Gibbons was the Founder and CEO of a tech startup providing an attribution database for digital-first content, delivering intelligence for content creators, brands, agencies, content networks, and distributors. In addition, Mr. Gibbons has extensive experience in digital advertising technology, having served as VP of International for Sizmek, a global, multichannel ad server that creates, distributes, customizes, measures, and optimizes cross-platform advertising campaigns.

Mr. Gibbons commented, “There isn’t a more exciting story in the podcast industry today than what is happening at Libsyn. I am excited to join the team to help continue Libsyn’s track-record of growth and product innovation. My professional skill set, and personal passions are perfectly aligned with Libsyn’s vision. I look forward to playing a role in Libsyn’s continued leadership of the podcasting market with the evolution of its platform strategy and extraordinary customer experience.”


Liberated Syndication Appoints Brian Kibby as Chairman of the Board of Directors



Liberated Syndication Inc. (“Lybsyn”), the industry’s leading podcast hosting platform and advertising marketplace, announced that Brian Kibby has assumed the role of Chairman of the Board of Directors, effective immediately.

Mr. Kibby has served on Libsyn’s Board since October 2019. Upon his appointment as Chairman, Mr. Kibby commented, “This is an exciting time for our podcast community and for Libsyn. Together, we are transforming the way that the world consumes information and content, while also creating effective platforms for our community to reinvest in their podcasts via effective advertising platforms. Libsyn has transitioned over the past two years from its hosting roots to a platform strategy with advertising and monetization at its core. The launch of Libsyn 5 and the recent acquisitions of AdvertiseCast, Glow, Auxbus, and Podgo position Libsyn as the go-to destination for podcasters for all of their growth needs. I look forward to supporting our new CEO, Brad Tirpak, the incredible team at Libsyn, and most importantly, our dedicated community of creators and artists.”

Mr. Kibby is currently the CEO of Modern Campus, a leading student information, engagement, and content management SaaS platform. Mr. Kibby has served the educational technology community for over three decades, including senior leadership roles at Pearson and McGraw-Hill, two of the world’s largest education technology and platform providers.

In addition to Mr. Kibby’s appointment as chairman, Libsyn earlier announced that Patrick Dolan will be joining the Board of Directors. Mr. Dolan previously served as the President of the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), the leading trade organization whose members include more than 650 leading media companies, agencies, brands, and technology firms driving the digital marketing economy. As part of these changes to the board, Denis Yevstifeyev will step down as a member of the Board of Directors on December 31, 2021.


Liberated Syndication Announces Patrick Dolan Appointed to Board of Directors



Liberated Syndication Inc., (“Libsyn”) , the industry’s leading podcast hosting platform and advertising marketplace, announced that it appointed Patrick Dolan, a veteran of the interactive advertising industry and seasoned operating executive, to its Board of Directors, effective November 22, 2021.

Mr. Dolan has been at the forefront of the digital media business for two decades. Mr. Dolan served as the President of the Interactive Advertising Bureau (“IAB”) from 2017-2020 and as COO since 2007. The IAB is the leading trade organization whose members include more than 650 leading media companies, agencies, brands, and technology firms driving the digital marketing economy. At the IAB, Mr. Dolan led the organization through transformational growth, helping to increase membership and co-founding the IAB Mobile and Data Centers of Excellence, Digital Sales Certification Program, and the IAB Tech Lab. Under Mr. Dolan’s leadership, the IAB also established the IAB Podcast Upfronts, a leading industry event connecting podcasters to agencies and brands.

“Patrick brings decades of digital media experience at both for-profit companies, as well as the most important trade organization, the IAB. He has been a long supporter of both Libsyn’s business and the podcasting sector overall. As a board member, I know Patrick will contribute significantly to Libsyn’s growth and help position the company to be a go-to-destination for podcasters for all of their needs,” said Libsyn’s CEO, Bradley Tirpak.

Previously, Mr. Dolan served as the Director of International Finance and later as Director of Business Operations at DoubleClick, Inc., an early innovator in digital advertising services that Google acquired in 2008. At DoubleClick, Mr. Dolan was responsible for establishing international financial operations and for integrating new businesses that DoubleClick acquired, including Abacus.

Mr. Dolan has also served in executive roles at The Locomotion Channel, a cable channel co-owned by Hearst Entertainment and Corus Entertainment, and CFO of the Early Learning Coalition of South Florida, a not-for-profit with a budget of over $160 million. Earlier in his career, Mr. Dolan served as the director of finance for George Soros’ network of philanthropic entities, the Open Society Institute, where he managed a budget of over $500 million disbursed in over 20 countries.

Mr. Dolan commented, “I am honored to join Libsyn’s Board. As the first podcast hosting company, Libsyn has long been an innovator in the podcast industry. With the recent addition of the AdvertiseCast marketplace and the tremendous growth in podcast advertising, it is an exciting time in the Company’s history. I hope to be able to support Libsyn’s platform strategy and development of new value-added services for podcasters.”


Liberated Syndication Announces Bradley Tirpak as CEO



Liberated Syndication, Inc. (“Libsyn”) announced the appointment of Bradley Tirpak as Chief Executive Officer, effective November 1, 2021.Mr. Tirpak will be responsible for overseeing all operations, business strategy, and capital allocation at the Company.

Mr. Tirpak commented, “I am thrilled to be assuming these new responsibilities at Libsyn. As the first publicly traded podcasting company, Libsyn’s legacy is unique. We were founded on and remain committed to the mission of helping podcasters thrive. With the addition of the AdvertiseCast podcast advertising marketplace, the Company has tapped into the fastest growing segment of the podcast market. I look forward to partnering with the entire executive team, all of Libsyn’s employees, and all of our customer and suppliers to continue the Company’s long track-record of delivering value to the marketplace and to shareholders.”

President and Chief Operating Officer Laurie Sims stated, “The entire Company joins me in congratulating Brad on his new appointment. Brad has been actively engaged in driving the business forward as Chairman, and he has spent considerable time on all aspects of our business, from developing market strategy, engaging with customers, and developing employees. This new role will allow Brad the opportunity to further lead these initiatives. We are excited for what the future holds for Libsyn with Brad as CEO.”

Eric Shaninian, a member of Libsyn’s Board of Directors, commented, “Since joining Libsyn’s Board of Directors in 2019, Brad has led Libsyn’s market expansion strategy, including Libsyn’s recent acquisition of AdvertiseCast, which has exceeded my expectations. Through the CEO search, it became apparent to the Board that Brad would be best suited for the role.”

As a professional investor with more than 25 years of investing experience, Mr. Tirpak has deep knowledge and expertise in public market equity markets, capital allocation, and corporate governance. Mr. Tirpak also has a long history of serving on the boards of publicly traded companies and delivering value to shareholders. Previously, he served as a portfolio manager at Credit Suisse First Boston, Caxton Associates, Sigma Capital Management, and Chilton Investment Company. Mr. Tirpak served a director at Birner Dental Management Services, Inc., a dental service organization, from December 2017 to January 2019, and as a director of Full House Resorts, Inc., a publicly traded hospitality and gaming company, from December 2014 to February 2021. Currently, Mr. Tirpak serves as a director of TSR, Inc., a publicly traded provider of information technology consulting and recruiting services, and as a director of Barnwell Industries Inc., a publicly traded company engaged in real estate development and oil and gas exploration. Mr. Tirpak also serves as a trustee of The HALO Trust, the world’s largest humanitarian mine clearance organization focused on clearing the debris of war in over 25 countries. Mr. Tirpak earned a B.S.M.E. from Tufts University and an M.B.A. from Georgetown University.

In conjunction with the appointment to CEO, the Company intends to separate the roles of Chairman and CEO. Mr. Tirpak will remain on Libsyn’s Board of Directors.


Liberated Syndication Announces New Chief Financial Officer



Liberated Syndication (“Libsyn”) announced the appointment of Jonathan Charak as Chief Financial Officer, effective September 29, 2021.

Mr. Charak will be responsible for all financial aspects of the company, including accounting, financial reporting, financial planning, and financial analysis. Mr. Charak commented, “I am thrilled to be joining Libsyn, which is a true pioneer in podcasting. I look forward to partnering with the incredible executive team as we continue Libsyn’s path as a leader in the podcasting industry and position the company to execute on its growth plans.”

President and Chief Operating Officer Laurie Sims added, “We are excited to have Jonathan join Libsyn. He has strategically led multiple organizations into high growth phases, including organic and acquisition-driven growth. He has previously been the Chief Financial Officer of five separate companies, founded two companies, and has experience in Big 4 public accounting. I believe he will make a fantastic addition to the team.”

Mr. Charak served as Chief Financial Officer and Secretary to the Board at Telular Corporation – a publicly traded Internet of Things business where he helped grow total enterprise value by over 17x during his tenure before the company was taken private through an equity buyout. Most recently, Mr. Charak served as a fractional CFO for multiple companies in several industries, including renewable energy, cannabis, and telecommunications, and was a Co-Founder of a real estate development company.

Primary functions in these roles included capital raising, capital allocation, mergers and acquisitions, business development, investor relations, and financial reporting, planning and analysis. Mr. Charak is a certified public accountant and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University Bloomington.


Liberated Syndication Announces Partnership with Fireside



Liberated Syndication Inc., (“Libsyn”) announced a partnership with new storytelling platform Fireside. The news was originally unveiled by Fireside co-founders Falon Fatemi and Mark Cuban during their keynote speech at the 2021 Podcast Movement Conference.

The partnership between Libsyn and Fireside will give creators more flexibility and ownership of their content through an open RSS-based distribution to reach and grow audience wherever they may listen with one-touch. This partnership provides a natural synergy for Fireside creators to leverage audio content to drive deeper engagement through Libsyn’s open platform technology, tools and analytics.

Laurie Sims, Libsyn President and COO noted, “Libsyn is dedicated to providing tools for all creators to maximize audience distribution while maintaining ownership of their content – which is a great fit with Fireside. This one-of-a-kind interactive storytelling platform will leverage Libsyn technologies to deliver a seamless podcast distribution experience for the Fireside creator – with the push of a button.”

Falon Fatemi, CEO and Co-founder described the nature of the partnership as completely simpatico. “Both of our companies believe in the power of individual voices and that the next media empires to emerge will be individual creators with deeply loyal and engaged audiences. Libsyn has been doing this for a lot longer than us and really understands what it takes to support creators and podcasters in this constantly evolving digital universe.”

Fireside is a platform that fosters thought-provoking and entertaining discussions through high quality virtual shows. This curated collection of storytellers, its founders are dedicated to sharing diverse voices that produce quality show content in a safe, friendly, and productive environment. The curated collection of storytellers has full creative control over their content and their audience.

Fireside is available on all iOS devices with plans for Android in the near future.


Libsyn Announces Closing of AdvertiserCast and $25 Million Equity Financing



Liberated Syndication Inc. (“Libsyn”) announced it has closed the previously announced acquisition AdvertiseCast, LLC (“AdvertiseCast”).

The consideration at closing consisted of $30 million, of which $18 million was paid in cash; $10 million in the form of newly issued Libsyn shares; and $2 million in the form of an earn-out, which is subject to the terms and conditions of the purchase agreement. AdvertiseCast Co-Founders Trevr Smithlin and Dave Hanley will remain with AdvertiserCast and serve as Chief Innovation Officer and Chief Revenue Officer, respectively.

Libsyn President Laurie Sims stated, “We believe AdvertiserCast, a market leader in podcast advertising, is a perfect fit with Libsyn’s strategy to provide independent podcasters robust tools. In addition to our host-read and programmatic advertising, we have identified even more synergies between our respective customer bases that will create additional upside for strong monetization solutions.”

Ms. Sims continued, “Libsyn and AdvertiserCast had the opportunity to present at the IAB Upfronts held in May of 2021, highlighting shows hosted by Libsyn along with clients of AdvertiseCast. The IAB reported almost 7,000 registrants for the three-day event, Podcast Upfront’s biggest virtual audience to date. It is clear from the reception we received that advertisers are enthusiastic about our combined customer bases. These synergies will create additional upside to attract advertisers to our platform. This feedback is consistent with industry growth estimates we are seeing. For example, IAB projects podcasting will see $1 billion in ad revenue in 2021 and $2 billion in 2023.

AdvertiserCast Co-Founders Trevr Smithlin and Dave Hanley commented, “AdvertiserCast has started 2021 off with a strong first quarter and our partnership with Libsyn will help accelerate our growth throughout the marketplace. In working with Laurie and her team since we announced the transaction, we have found a group of dedicated people who are extremely motivated to solidify Libsyn’s position as a market leader in the podcasting space including the rapidly-growing advertising market.”

In conjunction with the closing of the AdversiseCast acquisition, Libsyn also closed on a private placement led by Camac Partners, LLC, which was a pre-existing shareholder, new shareholder Hudson Executive Capital, LO, and several other new and existing investors. The gross proceeds from the private placement were $25 million.


Libsyn Acquires Podcast Monetization Platform Glow



Liberated Syndication Inc. (Libsyn) announced the acquisition of Glow, a leading podcast monetization platform that enables podcasters to build membership programs and generate listener-supported revenue. Glow’s membership technology, which includes private feed distribution and subscription billing, will allow podcasters on Libsyn’s 75,000+ podcasts to benefit from new monetization features and tap into significant new revenue streams.

Libsyn will integrate Glow as part of its hosting and monetization platform, in the future making it simple for customers to begin generating membership revenue in addition to leveraging Libsyn’s existing hosting, analytics, and monetization product suite. Libsyn-hosted podcasters will be able to easily experiment with and charge for premium content, accept secure payments and distribute the content to listeners in their podcast player of choice. They will also have the option to accept donations from listeners, using the same seamless Glow payment system.

“Libsyn saw the potential of podcasting before almost anyone else, and once again, we are thrilled to be at the forefront of a wave of podcasters who will generate revenue largely from their listeners,” said Libsyn President Laurie Sims. “As shown by our recent acquisition of AdvertiseCast, monetization for podcasters is becoming increasingly important, and Glow will help expand Libsyn’s positioning with podcasters who seek to monetize their content and build direct relationships with listeners. We are thrilled to be working with the team at Glow to bring its tools to Libsyn’s customer base.”

“Our mission at Glow has always been to empower creators, and Libsyn has been at the forefront of that movement for over 16 years,” said Amira Vallani, Glow’s founder and CEO. “This acquisition represents a big step in listener-supported podcasts moving into the mainstream and unlocking new dollars to support the ecosystem. We’re excited for Libsyn to be the steward of Glow’s product going forward.”

Podcasters on Libsyn will be able to begin taking advantage of new membership offerings in the coming months as part of the Libsyn 5 platform. However, hosting on Libsyn will not be required to utilize Glow. Libsyn plans to support all podcasts with monetization efforts regardless of where they host, enabling current Glow customers to continue to generate membership revenue without interruption.

As part of the transaction, the Company did not acquire the growth platform Refer-O-Matic, which Vallani and her team will independently focus on under the Creator Machines entity.


Liberated Syndication Announced Agreement to Acquire AdvertiseCast



Liberated Syndication Inc. (Libsyn) announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire AdvertiseCast LLC, one of the largest independent and fastest-growing podcast advertising companies. The combination of Libsyn’s 75,000 podcasts and AdvertiseCast’s premier advertising capabilities will accelerate revenue opportunities for podcast creators and provide advertisers with significant new inventory. The acquisition will position Libsyn to be the leading platform for both hosting and monetization.

“I am thrilled to announce this acquisition. AdvertiseCast is a market leader in the podcast advertising space that will fit perfectly with our existing Libsyn 5 hosting platform. Since we began in 2004, our primary objective at Libsyn has been to enable independent podcasters by providing them with a strong set of tools to help them thrive,” said Libsyn President Laurie Sims. “AdvertiseCast expands our tool set to include a robust monetization solution that enables efficient host-read and programmatic advertising. We expect to generate meaningful revenue by offering the AdvertiseCast solution to Libsyn’s customers and leveraging the combined inventory to attract even more advertisers to the AdvertiseCast platform.”

Founded in 2016, AdvertiseCast’s self-serve marketplace enables podcast advertising for over 1,500 active mid- and large-tier podcasters currently on its network and allows advertisers and agencies to efficiently buy and manage advertising campaigns in the podcast sector. Since inception, AdvertiseCast revenue has grown rapidly, increasing 45% year over year in 2020 to approximately $12 million. AdvertiseCast has scaled profitably since inception with no outside investment.

AdvertiseCast Co-Founders Trevr Smithlin and Dave Hanley commented, “We founded AdvertiseCast with a podcast publisher’s mindset and believe it is a perfect fit with Libsyn’s creator-centric ethos. Given the large growth in the podcasting market, we felt this was the perfect time to join forces with Libsyn in order to accelerate the growth of our business. As a leader in the podcast hosting space, Libsyn has a world-class podcast hosting platform that will deliver meaningful inventory to our podcast advertisers. Advertising is still a very under-penetrated segment of the podcast market, and we believe we are strongly positioned to ride the advertising wave with Libsyn’s support.”

Under the terms of the purchase agreement, Libsyn will acquire all of the issued and outstanding membership interests of AdvertiseCast in consideration for a purchase price of up to $30 million, of which $18 million will be in cash, $10 million will be in newly issued Libsyn shares, and $2 million will be in the form of an earn-out, which is subject to the terms and conditions of the purchase agreement. Co-Founders Trevr Smithlin and Dave Hanley will remain with the company and enter into employment agreements as a condition to closing. The acquisition’s closing is subject to other customary closing conditions.

Libsyn is also pleased to announce it has received funding commitments of $25 million through a privately placed equity transaction (“PIPE”) in Libsyn. The financing will be led by existing shareholder Camac Partners, LLC and new shareholder Hudson Executive Capital LP, among other existing and new investors. Proceeds of the PIPE will be used primarily to fund the AdvertiseCast acquisition and to provide Libsyn with additional capital for other strategic acquisitions. The closing of the PIPE is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to occur concurrent with the closing of the AdvertiseCast acquisition in Q2 2021.