“We want to become the Netflix of podcasting,”: Grant Blackley on turning podcasts into a profit driver

Former Assistant Editor

Southern Cross Austereo has big plans for growing its original podcasting with a view to becoming a leader in the audio and entertainment marketplace.

Speaking with The Australian, SCA CEO Grant Blackley said he wanted to turn original podcasting into SCA’s biggest profit growth driver.

“We want to become the Fox Sports or Netflix of podcasting,” he said. “The key is original content.

“Fox Sports creates original content in cricket, football and other sports. And what we go to Netflix most of all now is for original series. So what we are establishing is a premium, original-first model for podcasting.”

Speaking with Radio Today earlier this year, Blackley said that the path to monetizing SCA’s podcasting platform PodcastOne was becoming “much clearer,” but would not put a timeframe on the process.

Now, he’s told The Australian that he anticipates that by 2021, original podcasting will be making significant profits for SCA.

Blackley estimates that original podcasts currently creates $5 million in gross revenue nationally, a figure that according to PwC will grow by tenfold over the next four years to $50 million.

That revenue will still need to be split among many players.

Comparably, the Sydney radio revenue market alone is worth over $250 million and is split between just three players.

“Media buyers should start paying attention,” insists Blackley. “There is an education process underway.

“The advertiser has been saying, ‘My world is busy with radio, TV, print and out-of-home advertising, and until podcasting gets to critical size, we’re not paying attention.’ But I think we’ve hit a critical scale that is making it investible media.

“This is permanent. We will hit 100 million downloads a year by about Easter. The sheer scale of the listenership often surprises people.”

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Howard Sattler
3 Dec 2018 - 10:00 pm

I wish the sponsors/Advertisers who pulled the the pin on the SATTLER FILES, leading to the closure of our Podcast site, had shared your confidence in the medium

4 Dec 2018 - 1:46 am

It’s a very small pond to be fishing in why not focus on the main game FM radio and fix their Sydney stations.

4 Dec 2018 - 4:28 am

Does this mean he wants to make SCA radio subscription-based ? Charge people to listen ?

Peter Johnson
4 Dec 2018 - 6:57 am

SCA executives might want to focus on fixing the 2DAY FM breakfast show first

4 Dec 2018 - 8:17 am

I believed until i got to the part where he forgot how to count how many competitors he has in Sydney. I know Macquarie are on AM… but it’s still radio.

4 Dec 2018 - 12:18 pm

Agree with Peter Johnson just fix 2DAYFM it’s been 5 years in the wilderness.

5 Dec 2018 - 4:35 pm

Some great podcasts coming out of Brisbane right now aimed at the female audience have me and a lot of my friends hooked. I can see those being on an advertising execs target list for sure.


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