Spotify Hires Former CBS News Head David Rhodes as Part of Broader Podcasting Push

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David Rhodes attends the 2016 Mirror Awards at Cipriani 42nd Street on June 9, 2016 in New York City.  

The streaming service also tapped former Facebook executive Amy Hudson to help lead its expansion into sports programming.

Spotify's push into podcasting continues. On Friday (Sept. 6), sources confimed to Billboard that the streaming service has tapped former CBS News president David Rhodes as a consultant to assist with its broader push into news programming. The hire comes as part of Spotify's strategy to expand beyond music, which includes the company’s recent purchase of podcast networks Parcast and Gimlet, as well as the podcast creation app Anchor.

Sources have also confirmed the hire of Amy Hudson, who previously worked on sports partnerships at Facebook, to lead Spotify’s expansion into sports programming.

The news of both hires was first reported by The Information

Rhodes served as president of CBS News from 2011 until January of this year, when he stepped down amid reports of sexual misconduct allegations against former CBS chairman and CEO Les Moonves and former CBS This Morning anchor Charlie Rose, as well as declining ratings for its news programs. Rhodes has also worked at Fox News and Bloomberg.

Spotify’s recent news push includes the launch of the personalized news and music podcast Your Daily Drive, which features short-form news updates from outlets including NPR, The Wall Street Journal and Public Radio International. It also recently partnered with the Colombian newspaper El Tiempo on El Primer Café, a morning news podcast for Spanish-language listeners. And just this week, its recent acquisition Gimlet Media launched a new daily podcast with The Wall Street Journal.

Rhodes is expected to secure more such partnerships as Spotify ramps up its efforts to become a dominant player in the podcasting space, as well as fend off rival streaming services like Apple Music and Google Play.


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