Rumor Fact(ory) chapter 2: The Ringer wants $200m for acquisition

Yesterday we reported rumors that Spotify might acquire sports/pop podcast network The Ringer, founded by ex-ESPN Bill Simmons. Today a second swirl of rumors speculates that Simmons is asking $200-million for the deal. Michael McCarthy at Front Office Sports is the source of this rumor part 2.

Whether true or not, that figure encourages some value calculation.

As we cited yesterday, Engadget reports that The Ringer’s stable of podcasts (38 of them by our count) serves 100-million downloads per month across the catalog. If we imagine that each show contains two sponsor messages per show (which is conservative when you look at a Podspec recent analysis), there would be 200-million impressions per month assuming every download is played through. At a $30 CPM, gross revenue would be $6M. Bumping the CPM to $50, we get $10M. At an $80 CPM (which would be ultra-premium) monthly revenue would be $16M. Now let’s bump up the ads to four impressions per downloaded show — the $80 CPM monthly revenue becomes $32M.

By this scratchy (but generous) guesswork, a $200-million asking price seems to imply a whopping valuation. Time will tell — assuming that chapter 1 of this rumor, that Spotify is even interested, proves out.

Brad Hill