Group Nine’s digital brands – Thrillist, NowThis, The Dodo and Seeker – are making the move into podcasts and the company has partnered with iHeartMedia to make it happen. The two companies will work together to produce a series of podcasts slated to debut this fall. The deal will also include an advertising alliance.
“Storytelling is at the core of any forward-looking media brand in today's industry,” said Mickey Meyer, President of Group Nine's Network. “As a distributed media company and the leader on mobile, we've always met audiences where they are and podcasting is certainly the place to be. iHeartRadio knows this better than anyone and we're excited to partner with them to extend Group Nine’s brands and creative prowess into the audio space.”
Group Nine says Nielsen data shows its digital brands reach over 70% of Americans aged 18-34 every month.
Thrillist will release a podcast called Re-Rank (WT) that will feature the website’s writers discussing travel, food and beverage reviews and rankings. The show will launch with an initial 20-episode run. It will be hosted by Thrillist writer and producer Wil Fulton.
NowThis will launch a podcast called Who Is? that will explore backstories of America’s most powerful people. The podcast will launch with a 16-episode run. It will be hosted by NowThis correspondent Sean Morrow.
Another podcast, produced by Group Nine’s Los Angeles-based studios team Jash, will also be moved under the iHeart banner.
“Group Nine’s brands create content that resonates extremely well with their dedicated and loyal fans,” said Conal Byrne, President of the iHeartPodcast Network. “They are pioneers in social-first publishing and have built meaningful online communities that connect with audiences. We are excited to work together with them to co-produce an amazing slate of shows and extend their brands into the burgeoning podcast space.”
The iHeartPodcast Network will produce the content with Mangesh Hattikudur, Head of Development at the iHeartPodcast Network, named executive producer of the project. At Group Nine the effort will be led by President of Network Mickey Meyer and VP of New Initiatives Brett Kushner.