Gimlet Media, a popular podcasting network that hosts shows like StartUp and Reply All, has raised $15 million through a funding round led by Stripes Group. Investors included Cross Culture Ventures, Betaworks, and Emerson Collective.
Although some are skeptical of the investors’ decision to partake in the podcasting industry, it is only a misconception that podcast advertising isn’t profitable. Stripes Group is already a prominent investor in Blue Apron, “a mainstay in the world of podcast advertising.” Through financial reports, there is indeed a continued rate of growth within the company. Investors previously valued Gimlet at $55 million before the fundraiser, but their value has increased to an impressive $70 million.
For a company with around 80 employees, $70 million is definitely a number that has grabbed the attention of those on the outside looking in. The Interactive Advertising Bureau reported a projected “85% increase in ad revenue between 2016 and 2017, bringing the forecasted number up to $220 million.” Edison, a leading podcast research company, states that 56 million Americans tuned in to listen to a podcast in the last month of 2016.
Gimlet President Matthew Lieber made the following comment about their network and podcasts:
“When we started, we saw that there were a couple of big use cases for podcasting. The average length of a commute is 20 to 40 minutes, the average length of a workout is 20 to 40 minutes. The average length of most of our shows is 20 to 40 minutes, because they fit into those moments in people’s day. We’re really interested in what kind of formats are possible with Alexa, Google Home and the Apple HomePod, because it allows for an interactive audio experience. We’re actively developing new ideas that fit those use cases as well.”
Gimlet has impressed with its recent round of fundraising, and it will be interesting to see how they utilize the funds to compete with leading media properties like NPR and the New York Times.