Acast announces 2019 financial results
PRESS RELEASE — April 2, 2020
Stockholm, Sweden—Acast — the global podcast giant — this week announced company financials for the year ending 2019. Acast sustained its position as the leading global player in podcasting, seeing revenues grow 100%, from 180M SEK ($19M USD) 2018 to 361M SEK ($38M USD) 2019 and with a gross margin improving from 34 to 36%.
2019 continued Acast’s streak of doubling revenues. The contribution from all core markets was instrumental to Acast’s growth as the Americas grew by 148% and European operations by 91%.
Ross Adams, CEO of Acast, said: “2019 was a tremendous year for Acast. We’ve firmly cemented our position as the world’s most significant podcast company in every sense – listens, creators and revenue. It’s with pride that we’re able to share our annual financial results showing the effects of securing significant investment in 2018 and, more broadly speaking, how the company has grown.
We’re looking forward to continued success, recently launching in our first Spanish-speaking country, Mexico, and continuing to develop our tech and our output in 2020. It’s with a great deal of hard work, determination and passion for podcasting – and with considerable thanks to our incredible employees worldwide – that we have in essence doubled our revenue every year since we started trading.”
In 2019, Acast increased the number of shows on its network — reaching more than 10,000 shows globally with 1.9 billion listens for the year across 195 countries. It was also announced that CBC (Canada), PBS NewsHour (USA) and EARIOS network (USA) had chosen Acast as the official commercial partner for their podcasts, reinforcing Acast’s position as a dominant player in North America.
During 2019 Acast opened three new offices (France, Germany and Ireland), successfully acquired and integrated Pippa, and subsequently launched Acast Open — offering hosting, analytics and monetization for podcasters of all sizes.
A new content development arm (Acast Studios) was also launched with its first show, The Score: Bank Robber Diaries, already securing 1.25 million listens globally.
Acast increased its employee count from 92 to 179, and operating expenses increased by 74% with the company becoming more effective in growing revenue per cost unit. Key costs included the development of Acast’s proprietary technology.
In 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic will present new challenges for Acast. It’s too early to know exactly how the virus will impact the entirety of 2020, but Acast is fortunate that podcasting is a predominantly digital medium and that Acast products and services will remain unaltered.
To date, listening figures have continued to follow the upward trajectory seen year on year - including record breaking listens (+8.4% globally) during the past two weekends. Creators have also adjusted well, changing show formats, or simply recording remotely.
The advertising industry, the primary source of revenue for Acast, has had to adapt, however Acast is in a far stronger position than many other channels — not least because the outbreak is having no impact on people’s ability to listen to podcasts. Acast will continue to monitor, analyse and adjust to the global shifts that result from COVID-19.
Note on Acast’s reporting: For the 2019 reporting year Acast has converted to reporting annual financial statements in line with International Financial Reporting Standards, IFRS including a restatement of the 2018 and 2017 reporting years. The full statements will be available in the annual report.
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