Amazon in Exclusive Talks to Buy Podcast Startup Wondery

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Amazon is in exclusive talks with podcast startup Wondery about a potential acquisition, reports The Wall Street Journal. Rumors earlier this month suggested that Wondery had also held talks with Apple and Sony Music Entertainment as it shopped for a buyer.

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Wondery is said to be looking for $300 to $400 million, and it is known for popular true crime podcasts that include “Dirty John,” “Over My Dead Body,” “Dr. Death.” Apple’s discussions were in the early stages in November, but if Wondery is in exclusive talks with Amazon, Apple is likely out of the running.

A Wondery purchase would have provided Apple with a library of original content along with a source for ideas that could be turned into TV shows in the future. Wondery is already working on TV shows based on podcasts, including a WeWork series that will premiere on Apple TV+.

It’s possible that Wondery’s price tag was too high for Apple, but if Wondery is purchased by Amazon, Amazon will be another serious competitor in the podcasting space alongside Spotify. According to The Wall Street Journal, Amazon is aiming to push further into podcasts.

Apple too has been aiming to better compete with Spotify when it comes to podcasts, and rumors have suggested that Apple is looking to buy original podcasts. Apple has been looking for podcasts that could be adapted into ‌Apple TV+‌ content, and it also plans to create podcasts that will augmnet its TV shows.

Apple has already purchased podcasting companies. In 2017, it bought Pop Up Archive to improve search, and in early 2020, it bought podcasting service Scout FM, which turns podcast shows into radio-style stations.

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