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Tracking: September 17, 2019

At NPR, Pod $$ projected to beat Broad $$. Over at Current, Tyler Falk reports that NPR is expecting its podcast sponsorship revenues to surpass broadcast sponsorship revenues for the first time next year… which, you know, is a pretty big marker.

That projection was given during the NPR membership meeting that took place on September 5. According to Current, NPR CFO Deborah Cowen noted that the organization “has budgeted about $55 million in corporate sponsorship revenues from podcasts in fiscal year 2020” — which is $5 million more than what they’re expecting to bring in this year — while the “broadcast and event sponsorship” revenues are expected to be at $52.7 million next year.

Should those projections pan out, that would mean it took NPR about half a decade to reach this point following the early 2015 launch of Invisibilia, arguably the start of the organization’s modern podcasting era. Which sounds about right, I suppose; after all, nothing about this ecosystem is particularly straightforward.

Meanwhile, in the Granite State… New Hampshire Public Radio has a new President & CEO: Jim Schacter, who joins from WNYC, where he served as the VP of News for the last seven years. Prior to that, he spent seventeen years at the New York Times. Schacter replaces Betsy Gardella, who retired in December 2018 after thirteen years on the job.

On a related note: I’m told that the first episode of NHPR’s Patient Zero was downloaded over 215,000 times since launching on August 15. The podcast’s premium content-led fundraising campaign, as well, is off to a solid start, with the team seeing crossover donors from the Bear Brook campaign.At the IAB Podcast Upfronts in SF last week… Wondery came out with two partnership announcements: the first with The Athletic, which involves plans to launch a daily sports news podcast for the latter, and the second with All Things Comedy, an independent digital media studio founded by Bill Burr and Al Madrigal.

The Hottest Take, the new daily audio show from The Ringer (and Spotify exclusive), is basically everything I want for my morning commute.

All hail Who? Weekly’s Lindsay Weber and Bobby Finger, icons of our time. The Guardian has a great profile on the duo.

Release Notes

(1) Spotify’s Gimlet Media division is apparently getting ready for fiction-focused fall rollout. Three projects, very Hollywood talent-oriented, a couple of returning series. You can find the details in Variety.

(2) Radiotopia launches Passenger List, its fiction podcast starring Kelly Marie Tran, this week. Here’s my preview piece on the project for Vulture.

(3) Here’s something you don’t see very often: a bilingual podcast series, presented in both English and German. It’s called Finding Van Gogh, it’s a five-part series, and it’s released by the Städel Museum in Frankfurt. Sarah Omar is the producer.

(4) NY Post’s Page Six is launching a podcast this week, and it’s apparently called “We Hear” — separate and distinct, of course, from “We Here For You.”