If buzz around the Internet is to be believed, Pandora will soon announce an IPO. That’s a change from not long ago when Pandora‘s Founder Tim Westergren was saying there was no IPO in the foreseeable future.
But things change, and with their audience rocketing from 40 million to 75 million in a year, I guess Tim and CEO Joe Kennedy, along with their investors, may be thinking this is a good time to go public.
With the amazing growth in listeners and popularity, Pandora must be under pressure to expand as quickly as possible – device manufacturers from radios to televisions to cars are lining up to integrate. That’s all a great thing, making Pandora more and more ubiquitous, but each project requires a manager and developer plus time and attention and all that takes money.
In addition, licensing issues mean that as Pandora’s audience grows, so does its royalty liability. Cha-ching.
And lastly, as it is prone to do around the web, the buzz around Pandora will inevitably fade. There are lots of great streaming services out there, someday someone will de-throne Pandora, making now a great time for an investment offering.
Pandora has gotten lots of people to listen to Internet radio and lots of business folks to take notice. Their IPO, rumored to be for $100 Million will bring more attention to to Internet radio. May they thrive..
Last week Cox Media made a couple of smart moves that signify their serious approach to online advertising. First they announced that they would merge Adify, a company they acquired a couple of years ago that sells online advertising across vertical networks, with Cox Cross Media to form a new division Cox Digital Solutions. Within days they added to this move, buying the IB Local Network business and advertising sales group of Internet Broadcasting. Internet Broadcasting is an online banner network company that has been around awhile. No doubt, they have well established relationships and know how to sell online ad campaigns.
With the acquisition, Cox Digital picks up the products, customers and employees, all invaluable assets to a broadcast company looking for a digital makeover. The new company will be headed by Steve Shaw, formerly a Sr. V.P. with Cox Cross Media. Shaw himself is a retooled Radio Rep executive who left Katz Radio in 2006.
“IB Local Network’s publisher relationships and media sales power are a natural fit with Cox Digital Solutions.” said Steve Shaw, President of Cox Digital Solutions. “This combination will enable us to meet a wider set of customer needs through a richer solution set, increase efficiencies, and significantly expand our opportunities for growth.”
Broadcasters have struggled to capture digital dollars from the ever increasing digital portion of advertising revenues. This move, like the earlier acquisition of Adify, is a smart approach to doing business with digital agencies by meeting them on their own terms.