Pandora Leader Targets Bigger Radio Listener Share
is set on gaining a bigger share of what it calls the “radio listening universe.”
During the streamer’s third quarter financial recap at company headquarters in Oakland,
Calif., this week, CEO Tim Westergren specifically mentioned Pandora’s ability
to wedge itself further into the AM/FM terrestrial listening arena as critical
to its future.
Pandora is losing money — it reported a
net loss of $61.5
million in the third quarter — but says it now represents just shy of 10
percent of all radio listening done in the United States, according to its data.
“That makes us the largest radio station in every major market in the country,”
Westergren says. “And in some cases substantially larger than any local
Broadcasters have chafed at such
comparisons. But the growth gives Pandora the opportunity to leverage local
advertising dollars, he says. Local ad sales remain the fastest-growing part of
the provider’s revenue, which
million for Q3.
Westergren also announced
Pandora has passed the $1 billion threshold for annual advertising revenue.
“We are going after broadcasters. As we penetrate more cars
and homes we think of broadcast radio as being deeply vulnerable to what we
believe is a far superior product: our personalized radio product.”
Pandora has been in
full-blown transition mode since Westergren rejoined the company earlier this
year and is hoping to transition some of its 77.9 million users in the third
quarter to a subscription tier.
On Tuesday the CEO announced the debut of a Pandora Premium
pay service. It will launch in early December at a price point of $9.99 per
month with unlimited skips, unlimited replays, built-in search and play and
other features that will make for a more interactive and on-demand service,
Westergren says. The $4.99 a month Pandora Plus service was introduced earlier
this fall with fewer features.
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