Audio producer Listen, the leading independent podcast and radio company in the UK, has announced its acquisition by global podcast group PodX.
With Listen’s market-leading position and reputation in the UK, this deal is a milestone acquisition for PodX. For Listen, it will super-charge the company’s next phase of growth and give the company global reach. Stockholm-based PodX’s fast-moving strategy has already seen them invest in a range of world-class podcast studios across the globe including: Nouvelles Écoutes and Studio Minuit (France); Goldhawn Productions (UK); Post (Argentina); Flit (Sweden, Norway, Denmark);and Suomen Podcastmedia (Finland). PodX’s investment sees the Group purchasing a majority share in Listen. The deal represents the most significant acquisition in the UK industry since Sony’s purchase of Somethin’ Else in June 2021.
Josh Adler, Managing Director, Listen says: “When we launched in September 2019, we set out to be the UK’s leader in radio and podcast production – and we’ve achieved this. Not only have we consistently grown turnover year on year, we’ve specifically grown our podcast business by more than 250% and been at the forefront of the industry’s move into video and social.
“The beating heart of Listen is our obsession with producing premium content and a desire to move at pace and stay ahead change. We know there is a huge opportunity for us internationally and this is precisely what PodX can support us with.”
Listen works with the world’s biggest talent, brands, and platforms, including BBC, Audible, Spotify, Amazon Music, Sky, ITV, BMV, Vodafone, Global, Viacom, Sky Sports, and many more. The company has produced over 3,500 hours of content in the past 12 months, enjoyed by millions of listeners all over the world. Listen is the APA’s 2021 Production Company of the Year and ALF’s Best Start Up Agency of 2022.
Staffan Rosell, CEO and Member of the Board, PodX Group says: “We are building a Group of world class companies, and we are thrilled to be acquiring the most significant production company in the UK. Listen is a truly impressive business – highly respected, with a market-leading position, inspirational leadership with ambitious plans for the future. Listen has great potential and we are thrilled that it is joining the PodX Group.
“We are really excited by the opportunity to support Listen with the creative development firepower available across the Group. We want to not only help Listen superserve its current commissioners and attract new clients across the genres, but are also keen to invest in Listen’s own IP to create even more valuable IP together, both on a domestic and global level. This is a landmark acquisition for use in the UK in building a strong presence in the British podcast market. PodX continues to look for more world class podcast businesses, producers and IP, and are primarily focused on Europe and Latin America to find them.”
Darby Dorras, Director of Content, Listen, adds: “This is an incredibly exciting moment for Listen and its clients. Our content and plans remain as ambitious and premium as ever – but we’re now supercharged and even more global than before.”
Listen, which joins the PodX Group with immediate effect, will continue to be run by the same management team: Josh Adley, Managing Director; Darby Dorras, Director of Content; and Tim Hammond, Executive Director. The company will operate in the same way, from their current offices, but benefit from the creative and commercial opportunities presented by being part of an enlarged, global organization.
Stockholm-based PodX Group invest in podcast producers who create the best content to jointly develop those companies both domestically and globally, bringing them into their global network of renowned podcast companies to enable collaboration and synergies. The Group is committed in investing in business with international podcast IP rights: offering financing, as well as support around business development, internationalization and commercialisation, to emerging podcast producers and creators.
PodX was founding in 2021 by Patrick Svensk (founder of Kanal 5, Zodiak Media, and Nice Entertainment); Staffan Roses (previously Nordic Head of Viacom, SBS Radio, Discovery Radio, and most recently CEO of Bower Media); and Fredrik Said (global expansion at Universal and Acast). The Group’s main shareholder and financier is the Swedish investment group Qarlbo AB.