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Podcast Radio To Make Its U.S. Debut This Spring As It Also Secures New Investor.

Podcast Radio, the U.K.-based company that is focused on taking podcast content to radio listeners, plans to begin distributing an American version of Podcast Radio programming to radio stations and groups across the U.S. beginning this spring. It has partnered with New York-based KMG Networks to syndicate the programming.

“With KMG Networks, we are close to announcing our first partnership with a major U.S. broadcaster, which will see us launch in several radio markets in North America,” said Paul Chantler, Director of Podcast Radio.

Podcast Radio announced in October that it planned to bring its format to the U.S., saying that half of its online listeners are on this side of the Atlantic. The 24-hour format currently airs on digital channels in the U.K. and as it looks to syndicate its programming in the U.S., Chantler said, in addition to radio stations’ main programming, HD Radio side channels would also be a good fit as would local podcast platforms. Podcast Radio has been working with KMG Networks founder and network radio veteran Gary Krantz to lead its efforts in the U.S.

“Podcast Radio has established itself as a leading innovator and forward-thinking company in the U.K., providing a game-changing way for listeners to discover new podcasts,” Krantz said. “Podcast Radio dramatically increases the content offerings of spoken word stations and provides new and highly targeted content sponsorship opportunities for marketers.”

Chantler said earlier that the American version of Podcast Radio will be made available for broadcast on a barter and cash licensing basis. Stations will also be able to take either the entire 24-hour feed or program by daypart.

Podcast Radio launched three years ago with an ad-supported format that brings podcast to radio listeners. Similar to music radio, it relies on what it calls “pod jocks” to provide transitions between the shows, interview podcasters, and host chart shows and review shows. Among its talent line-up is long time KROQ-FM Los Angeles (106.7) morning personality Gene Baxter, formerly with “The Kevin & Bean Show.”

Podcast Radio currently plays up to ten full-length episodes of a podcast at the same time each day over a two-week period. But like podcasting, Chantler said last fall that Podcast Radio itself is likely to evolve its on-air format to sound more like music radio. Rather than relying on heavy-rotation hits, recurrent or gold records, it will instead have spoken word audio clips that will mine its vast catalogue of podcasts while its “pod jocks” ease the flow.

Helping with its U.S. launch are some additional financial resources. Podcast Radio says it has secured a “significant investment” by Tindle Media Group, which owns four radio stations in the U.K. and Ireland in addition to about two dozen British newspapers. It follows an investment made last year by the U.K. radio station operator Nation Broadcasting which took a ten percent stake in the company.

“We’re pleased to have two very well-established commercial radio groups support our exciting plans to grow internationally,” said Gerry Edwards, Founder and CEO, Podcast Radio. “Both Nation and Tindle have shown great faith in Podcast Radio, and we will draw on their considerable operational and commercial experience as we expand into U.S. audio.”

Podcast Radio raised initial capital from angel investors and an equity fundraising campaign for its launch in 2020. Other Podcast Radio investors include Ohio-based Evergreen Podcasts and British entrepreneurs, including former BBC Radio 1 DJ and businessman Bruno Brookes.

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