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Spotify Cancels the Obamas

April 21, 2022

Spotify is reportedly showing the Obamas the door. 

Bloomberg News reported on Wednesday that Higher Ground, the production company run by former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama, is seeking a multimillion deal elsewhere as their deal with Spotify expires this year, according to sources. 

Among the potential partners Higher Ground is negotiating with are Amazon's Audible and iHeartMedia. Sources tell Bloomberg News the Obamas is hoping to find its new home within the coming weeks. 

However, Bloomberg News indicated that the move was not the former president's choice. 

“It has talked with multiple big networks, including Spotify, but the Swedish streaming giant declined to make an offer, according to three sources familiar with the discussions," Bloomberg News wrote. 

Spotify did not immediately respond to Fox News' request for comment.

Higher Ground previously struck a deal with Spotify in 2019, releasing podcasts like "The Michelle Obama Podcast" and the Barack Obama-Bruce Springsteen program "Renegades: Born in the USA."

But as Bloomberg News reported, both have clashed with each other with Spotify hoping that the former president and former first lady would appear more in the podcasts while the production company felt releasing its podcast only on Spotify limited its audience. 

"Higher Ground is seeking a deal that will allow it to produce several shows and release them on multiple platforms at the same time. This could explain iHeart’s interest given that it hasn’t historically relied on an exclusive strategy for its podcasts. This is one reason why some potential bidders, like Spotify, have bowed out -- a widely released show will end up on their service anyway. Companies like Spotify and Amazon have pursued exclusive rights to promote their own services," Bloomberg News wrote. 

The report indicated that a hurdle the Obamas may face is their narrow commitment to each appearing in an eight-episode podcast, which "for some bidders isn’t enough of a commitment to justify a deal" like other popular podcast titles that go beyond limited series. 

Joseph A. Wulfsohn is a media reporter for Fox News Digital. Story tips can be sent to and on Twitter: @JosephWulfsohn.

SOURCE: Fox News



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