Revenue at Megaphone, the podcast hosting and advertising company, has “increased significantly” during the first nine months of 2020. That is according to its parent company Graham Holdings, which has told investors that Megaphone’s advertising and platform sales experienced “rapid growth” this year.
The media conglomerate did not release specific revenue figures for Megaphone. But Graham Holdings said the segment that included the podcast business posted an 8% revenue increase during third quarter in part due to the gains made by Megaphone. Even so, the business is still operating in the red. “As an investment stage business, Megaphone reported operating losses in the third quarter and first nine months of 2020,” said Graham’s update to investors. “However, such losses were down significantly from the prior year,” it said.
Pinna, the children-targeted subscription podcast company, is also backed by Graham Holdings. It also did not offer any specifics on Pinna’s performance other than to tell investors that the podcast company has had revenue increases in the first nine months of 2020.
That division also includes podcast publisher Slate however Graham did not offer any update on how the digital news site’s revenue performed during the quarter.
Graham Holdings sees a bigger future for itself in podcasts. Last month the company announced it had reunited with former Slate Editor-In-Chief David Plotz to launch City Cast. The company says it will be a national network of daily local podcasts.
City Cast will launch this winter in a handful of cities — it hasn’t yet said which markets will be on its first list. The daily podcasts will combine local news with interviews with local decision-makers and offer perspective on what is behind the headlines. City Cast is currently staffing up, hiring podcast hosts, producers, reporters, editors and project managers. It also plans to publish daily newsletters that will be companions to the podcast, so it is also hiring print journalists. Each city will have a team of three to six employees.