Radio and Podcast News In Brief

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Harry Steele and Eric Boyko

Harry Steele, the former chairman and founder of Newcap, has bought $25 million in Stingray Digital Group stock, the Montreal-based multi-platform music entertainment company which just acquired Newcap’s radio and television stations for $523 million. Stingray president and CEO Eric Boyko said in a release that he’s “honoured by the vote of confidence in Stingray and its business model” shown by the Steele family. The company says the net proceeds of the private placement will be used for working capital, including to provide further flexibility for a future major acquisition by reimbursing certain amounts owing under its credit facilities. Read more here.

Anchor has posted data on how people listened to its podcasts in September. Apple Podcasts accounted for 52 per cent of all downloads, driving more listening than all other sources combined, while Spotify had 19 per cent of listener share. Google Podcasts drove just 0.9 per cent of listener traffic, however Anchor speculates that could change quickly with Google in a position “to not only grow their own player’s awareness, but awareness of podcasting in general.”

CBC Podcasts is adding Expect Theatre’s PlayME to its offerings which transforms Canadian plays into audio dramas. PlayME’s first audio drama under the new partnership will be Prairie Nurse by Marie Beath Badian. In total, five plays from some of Canada’s most notable playwrights will be freshly recorded as radio dramas for the new season. The season will also feature Between Breaths by Newfoundland-based playwright Robert Chafe; What A Young Wife Ought To Know by Hannah Moscovitch; The Fish Eyes Trilogy by Anita Majumdar; and Huff by Indigenous writer Cliff Cardinal. Each play will be recorded in three episodes, followed by another episode that features an interview with the respective playwright.

Goldenwest Broadcasting’s Swift Current, SK stations The Eagle 94.1 FM (CIMG-FM), CKSW 570, and Magic 97.1 (CKFI-FM) helped raise $171,813 during the Dr. Noble Irwin Healthcare Foundation Radiothon on Nov. 2. Benefitting Cypress Regional Hospital, the money will go toward the purchase of a portal-digital X-ray machine. The Bank of Montreal matched donations this year up to $25,000.

Country 100 (CILG-FM) Moose Jaw raised $108,350 through its 6th Annual Paws for Pledges Radiothon on Nov. 2. Including this year’s total, the Paws for Pledges Radiothon has raised over $541-thousand dollars for the Moose Jaw Humane Society since 2013.

On this episode of Broadcast Dialogue the Podcast, we talk to Jeff Vidler of Audience Insights about the 2018 Canadian Podcast Listener Survey. Vidler covers everything from barriers to podcast growth and the rise of smart speakers in Canada, to which podcasts Canadians are listening to.


Radioplayer Worldwide has unveiled the “Reference Radio” at the WorldDAB General Assembly in Berlin – a prototype touchscreen radio for dashboards, designed to show how smart ‘hybrid’ technology can transform in-car listening. The ‘hybrid’ prototype is multi-platform, able to play DAB digital radio, FM, and internet radio streams. But unlike most modern car radios, the Reference Radio shows a single list of stations across all those platforms, with the driver simply tapping the station logo to start listening, eliminating the need to select different sources first. Radioplayer says safety and reducing driver distraction were a key factor in the design, with drivers also able to change stations by swiping or using steering wheel buttons. Read more here.


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