Amazon has snapped up Art19, which provides tools to podcast creators and publishers for hosting, ad serving, audience targeting and measurement, as the ecommerce colossus continues to build out its podcasting footprint.
Art19 will be housed under Amazon Music, which is also where Wondery is situated.
“We’re excited to announce that Art19 is joining Amazon Music,” the company said in a statement on its website. “Art19 is an innovative company that enables podcast creators to manage, distribute, analyze and monetize their work, and we’re thrilled to have them on the team. Together, we will be able to expand our offerings and even better serve your podcasting needs.”
In the past year, Amazon has upped its strategy to cash in on the podcast boom and keep pace with Spotify’s podcasting push. In September, Amazon Music launched several million episodes of free podcasts and the division also has a slate of original podcasts being produced exclusively for Amazon Music, including shows from DJ Khaled, Becky G, Will Smith and Dan Patrick.
Launched in 2015, Art19 had raised $7.5 million from investors including Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments (BDMI) and DCM Ventures, according to Crunchbase. The company is based in Oakland, Calif.
Art19 offers two kinds of podcast reads: listener-targeted ads across a pool of more than 1,000 shows, and host-read ads across a carefully curated collection of shows. That collection includes the Art19 comedy network “Misfit Toys,” as well as shows spanning true crime, news, society and culture. Deals can include traditional podcast ad buys, creative sponsorships, and even full-series takeovers, according to the company.
Last fall, Art19 announced the hiring of David Murray, previously CFO of podcast content and ad network Midroll/Stitcher (sold by E.W. Scripps to SiriusXM in July 2020) as the company’s first CFO.