16th June 2021
Sony Music Entertainment (SME) June 16, 2021 announced the acquisition of leading UK audio, TV and social media producer Somethin’ Else, marking a major ramping up of SME’s in-house creative production capabilities and the creation of a newly expanded global podcast division. Steve Ackerman and Jez Nelson are to lead the global division, marking the accelerated growth of SME’s presence in the global podcast industry.
Somethin’ Else Chief Content Officer and Vice Chairman Steve Ackerman and Somethin’ Else founder, Executive Chairman and CEO Jez Nelson will jointly spearhead SME’s global podcast content and business development strategy. Ackerman will become Executive Vice President, Co-Head Global Podcasts, overseeing operations in New York and Nelson will run the division’s UK-based podcast operations as Executive Vice President, Co-Head Global Podcasts. Both will report directly to SME’s Dennis Kooker, President, Global Digital Business and U.S. Sales and Tom Mackay, President, Premium Content A&R.
Somethin’ Else’s TV and social media business will become an extension of SME UK’s 4th Floor Creative division, enhancing SME UK’s ability to facilitate creative and commercial opportunities for artists, labels and partners.
“Expanding our relationship with Somethin’ Else brings their best-in-class capabilities and production expertise fully into the Sony Music family,” said Kooker. “Our new global podcast division is key to our plans for a fast-paced expansion in the market, diversifying our creative abilities and providing a home for exciting content that will benefit millions of podcast-lovers around the world.”
“Having collaborated with Somethin’ Else on a number of hit podcasts, we know how impactful their work has been on shaping the marketplace”, added Mackay. “Under Steve and Jez’s leadership, we can now provide a range of expanded collaboration opportunities for the podcast community globally and focus on growing a robust slate of new in-house projects.”
“We’re delighted to be joining Sony Music at what feels like a critical moment in the growth and acceleration of the global podcast industry,” added Ackerman and Nelson. “Somethin’ Else is known as the leading premium podcasting production company in the UK and our ambition is to harness that drive and creativity to make Sony Music a global market leader. Sony Music is renowned for always putting the artists first in everything they do, and we’ve seen that culture fully embedded in their podcast offering too. That global expertise, artist first culture, and ability to cut through the noise has huge appeal to podcasting talent and we look forward to harnessing that in this new chapter of our business.”
SME and Somethin’ Else have collaborated on several hit podcasts since January 2020, including David Tennant Does A Podcast With…, Power: The Maxwells, The Fault Line: Bush, Blair & Iraq and their newest release Cheat!. With the acquisition, SME will leverage Somethin’ Else’s vast production experience and relationships in audio entertainment to continue developing chart-topping new podcasts across a range of genres, form new partnerships with talented creators, and push the entire global podcast industry forward.
Specializing in audio, entertainment, music and arts content, Somethin’ Else is the UK’s largest independent podcast and audio producer and the BBC’s biggest independent producer of programmes, covering a variety of music genres and flagship speech shows for the broadcaster. The company’s dedicated social media team creates high frequency, high engagement content for renowned brands and most recently, ran a social media campaign for the 2021 BRIT awards, delivering 1.7M viewers (a 60% increase y-o-y), with YouTube content on The BRITs channel accumulating a further 15M views in the 48 hours after the event. Somethin’ Else’s TV division is a multi BAFTA award winning production house working across documentaries, multi-part series and live music events.