January 2, 2014
Radionomy Reportedly Snaps Up Winamp And Shoutcast Services From AOL
Enid Burns for redOrbit.com – Your Universe Online
Brussels, Belgium-based Radionomy is reportedly the proud owner of the newly-acquired Winamp and Shoutcast properties, which it acquired from AOL. The news was first reported by TechCrunch, which is owned by AOL.
AOL had considered shutting down Winamp and Shoutcast legacy digital music services, but held the closure, pending a sale. It was originally believed that Microsoft would buy the two properties. The deal remains unconfirmed. The two properties had been set to close on December 20, CNET reports.
The two properties survived due to a pending sale, and also possibly in part because users protested the closure.
Two users of the AOL services uncovered the acquisition, TechCrunch reports. One Bryon Stout made the connection on the Winamp forums, where he noticed the nameservers changed from AOL to Radionomy. Carsten Knobloch noted that Winamps nameservers had been transferred to Radionomy, but not Shoutcast’s. TechCrunch learned from a source that the deal includes both properties, and is expected to be finalized by Friday.
The Winamp nameservers have changed, however the domain continues to be registered to AOL, reports TheNextWeb.
Radionomy is a free online radio aggregator that features a variety of music through themed radio stations. It allows the creation of radio stations, offering revenue sharing from ads played to subscribers. The service has 6,000 stations in its catalog. Shoutcast comes with a catalog of 50,000 radio stations, which will add to the Radionomy selection. Winamp offers media playing software, which could help Radionomy program and deliver radio stations.
Streaming radio services such as Radionomy increasingly need to innovate to survive, which has triggered industry consolidation. Competitor Pandora acquired terrestrial radio station KXMZ-FM in order to get around the higher royalties charged to streaming radio services. Terrestrial radio is subject to lower fees.
Radionomy works under an innovative model to allow users or broadcasters to create radio stations on which they can then take a revenue split. The broadcaster model was developed last fall when Radionomy said it would allow broadcasters to create stations and monetize those stations as the company grew its subscriber base. The addition of Shoutcast users, as well as stations, will add to the Radionomy catalog and potentially bring in additional revenues.
The acquisition offers synergy, GigaOm reports. "It seems like Radionomy’s DIY audio philosophy jives well with both Winamp and ShoutCast, especially as both have supported many homegrown radio stations over the years. However, whether Winamp will exist as a standalone product remains to be seen — Radionomy might benefit deeply from integrating the service directly into its current offerings," GigaOm's Lauren Hockenson wrote.
While Radionomy will merge Winamp and Shoutcast under its umbrella, the acquisition could be credited to one of Radionomy's strategic investors, Music Matic, which develops audio and video experiences for clients at stores and other venues, TechCrunch reports. It is possible that MusicMatic is making the acquisition to bolster its investment in Radionomy.