Independent fiction podcast company Realm is expanding into new sectors with the acquisition of kids podcast network Pinna and unscripted podcast network Lipstick & Vinyl.
Pinna develops and curates audio content exclusively for kids aged 3-12 with a slate of over 150 podcast titles, both originals and partnered content, including series like Grimm, Grimmer, Grimmest, Opal Watson: Private Eye, Totally Unauthorized Minecraft Fan Show, and Quentin & Alfie ABC Adventures.
As part of its expansion into the kids and family podcast sector, Realm has also signed two new ad sales deals with digital media company and children's book publisher Rebel Girls, and narrative kids podcast company GoKidsGo. With these deals, Realm will represent the ad sales of Rebel Girls and GoKidGo’s combined audio content, totalling 375 hours.
“There is untapped potential in kids’ audio, a nascent, fast-growing, evergreen market,” said Realm co-founder and CEO Molly Barton. “We see the acquisition of Pinna as a first meaningful step in our commitment to this category and our new partnerships with Rebel Girls and GoKidGo will fuel our collective success."
With this acquisition, Pinna will continue to have a separate digital footprint from Realm and widen its audience reach through Realm’s ad-supported distribution network as well as amplify its existing subscription business. Realm plans to launch an audio production hub dedicated to kids and families, with former Pinna CEO Maggie McGuire acting as an advisor.
Realm’s acquisition of Lipstick & Vinyl, a podcast network which provides opportunities for underrepresented voices, highlights the company’s expansion into unscripted podcasts, now adding over 50 ongoing podcasts from the network, including examples like entertainment and lifestyle podcasts The Only One In The Room and Broke Girl Therapy. The acquisition was made to meet advertisers’ demands for content that appeals to women in their 20s and 30s.
“Our acquisition of Lipstick & Vinyl and its compelling unscripted fare is a perfect addition to our fiction lineup and an accelerant for our flywheel of growth,” said Barton. “We see this content as complementary and an opportunity to elevate diverse and engaging voices across lifestyle, entertainment and pop-culture.”
In addition to the acquisitions and new partnerships, Realm also announced restructuring changes in its management team, with former Warner Bros. animation executive John Brooks being promoted to head of content and reporting to Barton. Studio operations manager Nicole Kreutter has also been promoted to head of network, and will report to Realm vice president Mary Assadullahi alongside director of business development Blandine Mercier and audience development lead Heather Mason.