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55 per cent report higher podcast consumption since March 2020, reveals Amaeya Media's 2020 State of the Industry report

PRESS RELEASE · دبي دبي, United Arab Emirates ·

The MENA Podcast industry felt the impact of significant changes in podcast consumption habits as a result of COVID-19, reveals Amaeya Media’s 2020 State of the Industry report. While listenership was initially impacted as lockdowns were implemented to grapple with the pandemic, more than half (55%) of the respondents of the regional survey stated that they listened to more podcasts since March 2020.

The second annual State of the Industry report on podcasts in the MENA region was published today by Amaeya Media, the UAE’s largest podcast network. The report reveals data on regional podcast consumption based on a listener survey, and key industry insights around podcast creation, monetisation, and consolidation.

Of those respondents who listened to more podcasts since March 2020, 50% stated that they consumed entertainment-related podcasts, indicating a clear desire for more fun, lighter content in dreary times. Self-help and inspirational podcasts came in second at 36% while only 2% of respondents said they listened to pandemic-related content.

“Despite the challenges of 2020, the podcast industry has emerged more resilient and robust. In response to the growing demand, podcast creators, such as ourselves, produced more regionally-relevant, high-quality audio content. Companies and brands also leveraged the medium as a way to authentically reconnect with their audiences," said Chirag Desai, Founder and CEO of Amaeya Media.

The State of the Industry report revealed strong acceptance of branded podcast shows, with 92% of respondents saying they would listen to branded podcasts. Two-thirds of podcast listeners also stated that they are open to listening to advertising on shows. Furthermore, a sizable 65% of respondents said that they found podcasts equally or more credible than the traditional mediums of radio, newspaper, and television.

The listener survey was carried out in December 2020 and early January 2021. It received 467 valid responses, with the respondents’ median age being under the age of 25, similar to the previous year. Seventy-one per cent of respondents were based in the UAE, followed by respondents from Saudi Arabia and Egypt among others.

You can access the Amaeya Media 2020 State of the Industry report for podcasts in MENA here:


This is a press release which we link to from our daily newsletter about podcasting and on-demand. This is reprinted verbatim; we may rewrite headlines and descriptions.

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