San Francisco, June 22 – Frustrated with Spotify’s exclusive terms, former US president Barack Obama and his wife Michelle Obama have left the Swedish music streaming platform and signed a multi-year, worldwide podcast deal with Amazon subsidiary Audible.
Audible did not disclose the financial terms of its agreement with Higher Ground, the media company run by the Obamas.
The Obamas’ previous deal with Spotify was reported to be worth around $25 million.
In April, the Obamas and Spotify decided not to extend their exclusive podcast partnership beyond the end of this year.
“At Higher Ground, we have always sought to lift up voices that deserve to be heard, and Audible is invested in realising that vision alongside us. I’m looking forward to partnering with them to tell stories that not only entertain but also inspire,” said Barack Obama.
Since its inception, Higher Ground, an Academy Award and Emmy Award-winning media company, has brought powerful stories to life.
Higher Ground’s hit podcasts include ‘The Big Hit Show’, a series of audio documentaries hosted by Alex Pappademas focused on pieces of popular culture that have defined and changed our culture and ‘Tell Them, I Am’, a podcast collection of universal stories from Muslim voices.
It also produced ‘Renegades: Born in the USA’, ‘The Michelle Obama Podcast’ and the upcoming ‘The Sum of Us’ podcast series.
“Together, we will keep striving to tell compelling, provocative, and soulful stories, while doing everything we can to make sure they reach the folks who need to hear them,” said Michelle Obama.
Higher Ground’s first film release, ‘American Factory’, won the 2019 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.
“We are thrilled to welcome two of the most profound voices of moral and intellectual leadership of our times into the Audible fold, and to be able to elevate President and Mrs Obama’s singular ability to provide hope and uplifting guidance through their voices,” said Don Katz, Audible’s Founder and Executive Chairman. ”
The Obamas signed a deal with Spotify in 2019. They also signed a deal with Netflix in 2018.