Back during the Fear Factor era, who would have guessed that Joe Rogan would go on to create one of the most popular podcasts in the world? The Joe Rogan Experience reportedly reaches 190 million downloads a month, according to the comedian and UFC commentator himself. And considering he just signed multi-year deal with audio streaming giant Spotify—believed to be worth US $100 million—it’s safe to assume that that bonkers number has been sufficiently verified.
Rogan announced on Tuesday that the show will be available on Spotify starting 1 September this year (it wasn’t on the platform at all this whole time), before moving exclusively to the platform at the end of the year.
“It will remain FREE, and it will be the exact same show,” he assured his fans in his announcement post. “It’s just a licensing deal, so Spotify won’t have any creative control over the show. They want me to just continue doing it the way I’m doing it right now.”
Between its exorbitant acquisitions (they recently bought two podcasts networks, Gimlet Media and Parcast, as well as podcast creation platform Anchor for US $400 million combined) and growing investment in technology (in-app video that could have you forgetting about YouTube soon) Spotify seems laser-focused on becoming the biggest name in audio.
This latest exclusive licensing deal is yet another step towards that goal. Appropriately for such a data-driven company, the acquisition of Rogan’s podcast was reportedly prompted by the fact that it was already the most searched for podcast on the platform. Spotify will be hoping that getting the podcast as an exclusive will lead to increased traffic and subscribers to its service. In fact, they’re betting hundreds of millions of dollars on it.