Global media holding company Vivendi announced today that it has acquired a majority share (64.4%) of Radionomy Group, planting a flag in pureplay online radio and streaming audio advertising.
Radionomy is an Internet radio platform that hosts independent station producers and traditional broadcast radio brands which stream online. Over 57,000 stations can be found and heard on the Radionomy platform. That platform includes SHOUTcast, the venerable enabler of online radio stations, which Radionomy acquired in January, 2014. Winamp, an iconic and beloved music player app which was founded by the same startup (Nullsoft) as SHOUTcast, is also a Radionomy asset.
The Radionomy Group also owns TargetSpot, a streaming audio ad network that operates in the U.S. and France.
In Vivendi’s vast media holdings, the entity most relevant to this deal is Universal Music Group (UMG), the world’s largest recorded music company. One of the three “major labels,” UMG recently announced that over half (51%) of its digital revenue in Q3 of this year came from streaming audio. That metric represents a trend in which streaming is gaining on digital song downloads, as consumers migrate from owning music to accessing music.
“Vivendi’s capital investment in Radionomy Group will provide an impetus for its commercial development, supported by the promising outlooks for the advertising and digital audio markets all over the world,” according to a joint press release. “Radionomy is also very well positioned to capitalize on the expected evolution of the digital audio market towards targeted advertising, thanks to its technical tools and its partnerships.”
The announcement hints at products in the pipeline, at least conceptually.
“With this investment in digital radio, Vivendi expands its presence in the value chain that flows from talent discovery to content production and distribution. Collaboration between the digital audio platform and the Vivendi businesses will be established and a number of innovative offers will be developed.”