EMAILED ON March 5, 2019 BY Conor Grant

Luminary has raised $100m, and the rest of the podcast industry is listening

The podcast network Luminary just closed a round of $60m in fresh cash, bringing its total amount of funding to more than $100m. 

Unlike other ’casting competitors that have been acquired by larger companies like Spotify for princely sums of cash, Luminary has remained independent by charging for its star-studded subscription products.

Big noise from big names

Unlike competitors who offer free, ad-supported podcasts, Luminary charges $8/month of ad-free access to larger-than-life radio personalities including Guy Raz, Lena Dunham, Malcolm Gladwell, Trevor Noah, and Conan O’Brien.

Luminary will also offer free access to 600k “non-premium” podcasts (which will include ads) in its marketplace, but it will rely on its exclusive content to keep the lights on.

An independent voice in the podcast industry

The podcasting industry has consolidated rapidly in recent months. 

A radio consortium headlined by NPR bought Pocket Casts last May, and Spotify acquired platforms Gimlet and Anchor in February and announced plans to spend a total of $500m on its podcast platform shopping spree.

For now, Luminary has enough cash to stay independent for a while if it wants to: For perspective, Gimlet media — which Spotify bought for about $230m in February — had only raised a total of $28.5m at the time it was acquired.