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Pandora chief says its days of big user growth are over.

The sprouting of new competitors can no longer be ignored. Pandora CEO Brian McAndrews believes growing his company’s user base will become “more challenging,” conceding yesterday that it is “not realistic” to expect the webcaster to continue the sort of growth it has experienced during the past few years.

Streaming consolidation: Deezer buys Stitcher.

In another sign of consolidation in the online radio industry, digital music service Deezer is buying personalized talk radio aggregator Stitcher. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Paris-based Deezer, which claims a global audience of 16 million users across 180 countries, will add some 35,000 radio shows and podcasts from Stitcher, including eight out of the top ten terrestrial radio shows. MORE

Summer slowdown hits Beasley’s Q3.

The latest indicator on how tough the mid-year period was for broadcasters comes from Beasley Broadcast Group, which reported Friday that its third quarter revenue fell 5.8% to $24.5 million. Meanwhile the multi-market station swap between Beasley and CBS Radio is moving forward. Beasley is adding 14 stations in Tampa, Charlotte and Philadelphia from CBS and it’s handing off five other stations in Philly and Miami. MORE

Cap City Kentucky programmer expands turf.

Cap City Communications Frankfort, KY cluster VP of programming J.C. Burton adds similar duties at Cap City’s cluster in State College-Lewistown, PA. Burton has been at Cap City since May 2008. Before that, he was an afternoon air personality at W & B Broadcasting’s country “Big Cat 105.5” WLVK, Ft. Knox, KY from 2007 to 2008. MORE

Sports radio shake-up in Springfield.

The sports radio landscape in Springfield, MO will shift come January. After more than a decade as a Fox Sports Radio affiliate, Meyer Communications “Jock 98.7” KWTO will switch to ESPN Radio, according to the Springfield News-Leader. The change gives ESPN FM distribution in the market – it currently airs on iHeartMedia’s sports KGMY (1400). “Jock 98.7” will continue to air two long-running local shows from 9-11 am and from 4-6 pm. MORE

People Moves This Week.

Digity Media hires a director of revenue development. Entercom ventures into the publishing world to recruit a new top-level national sales executive. Premiere Networks names a VP of programming and branded entertainment. And a former Minnesota news reporter returns to his old station as program director. Catch up with all this week’s People Moves HERE.

Swift’s latest release causes conundrum for country radio.

Taylor Swift declared “1989” her “very first documented, official pop album” and “Shake It Off” confirmed the statement with a sound closer to ‘80s pop than country. While many stations have yet to embrace what had been a core artist, Inside Radio talked with one PD that’s put the single in rotation. Of the first single’s 207,564 spins to date, only 124 were at country, while the song hit No. 1 at CHR and hot AC. MORE

Kix Brooks defends evolving sound of country radio.

So-called “bro country” and artists who bring rock and rap elements to country radio may be ruffling some feathers of traditional fans of the format. But “American Country Countdown” host Kix Brooks is defending the changing sound of country radio. MORE

Nielsen chief still seeking web ratings consensus.

New digital and mobile products are helping propel Nielsen’s revenue higher. The company says total revenue increased 13.3% to $1.57 billion during the third quarter. Its media ratings revenue grew at more than twice that rate with a big portion of that growth coming from the addition of Arbitron’s radio business. MORE

AudioHQ becomes digital audio’s newest rep firm.

Since launching two months ago, the boutique digital audio ad selling firm AudioHQ has seen its monthly reach grow rapidly from 8 million in August to nearly 50 million today. It’s done that through a series of deals, most of which have not yet been disclosed publicly. MORE

New York AM sold for $12.5 million.

Gregory Davidzon and Sam Katsman’s Davidzon Radio has reached a $12.5 million deal to buy New York’s WSNR (620) from Blackstrap Broadcasting. Davidzon has been among the time buyers on the brokered station since 2003, airing Russian-language programming. The deal leaves Blackstrap with one final station: WUFC, Boston (1510) which Wallis Communications leased and used to launch a new talk station in July.

Intern lawsuit moves to mediation.

A federal magistrate judge in New York has ordered iHeartMedia to sit down with lawyers representing a former intern and try to mediate a settlement to her lawsuit by next spring. IHeartMedia has denied it violated federal and state labor laws when assigning duties to ex-intern Liane Arias. MORE

BIA: Big local merchants diving into social media.

Small and medium-sized business that shell out more than $25,000 a year on advertising and promotion plan to allocate 17.4% of their marketing budgets to social media in the next 12 months. That’s up from 15.6% last year and dramatically higher than the 10.5% they devoted to social in 2012. The findings from BIA/Kelsey present an opportunity for radio, especially those with personalities with large social media followings. MORE


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