Global podcast powerhouse Acast released its Q2 earnings today. In the official release and presentation highlights we see top-line growth leading to negative operating margins.
Below are details around the highlights and the total operating loss for the quarter:
- Net sales in the quarter amounted to SEK 386.3 M (315.8), which corresponds to net sales growth of 22% (39%)
- Organic net sales growth amounted to 15% (28%)
- Gross margin for the quarter was 36% (30%), the second quarter 2022 was negatively affected by one-off costs linked to certain podcast agreements
- EBITDA for the quarter amounted to SEK -41.7 M (-98.6) and the EBITDA margin was -11% (-31%). The improvement in the EBITDA result means that Acast is following the plan to reach a positive EBITDA in 2024
- Operating loss amounted to SEK -59.3 M (-112.0)
Product developments and innovations add deeper perspective into Q2 operations:
- Acast signed an agreement with President Barack and Mrs Michelle Obama’s media company Higher Ground. The agreement means that Acast will handle ad sales and content distribution.
- During the quarter, Acast+ Access was introduced, a technology that allows companies with existing paid subscriptions to include podcasts as a benefit in those subscriptions.
- Acast launched host-read sponsorships on its self-serve ad platform (RAIN coverage HERE.) This means that advertisers of all sizes can themselves book campaigns to be delivered as host-read sponsorships by podcast hosts in their own voices, opening more podcasts to monetization. Previously only pre-recorded podcast ads were available on a self-serve basis
- Acast launched Collections+, AI-powered data capabilities that increase the reach in our podcasts. Collections+ combines subsidiary Podchaser’s podcast data and proprietary algorithms with Acast’s marketplace, scaling ad sales and increasing monetization in small and medium-sized podcasts.
CEO Ross Adams acknowledged the quarter’s successes while acknowledging difficult market conditions: “The timing of a broad recovery in the world’s advertising markets is still difficult to assess, but certain positive signals now appearing on the horizon give hope for the future.”