In a major rebranding move that leaked out via social media late Monday, Entercom Communications has changed its name to Audacy.
The shift from Entercom, a name that dates to October 1968, is effective immediately.
Much has changed for the company founded by Joseph Field. Today, it is led by his son, Chairman and President/CEO David Field. And, under the younger Field, Entercom grew.
On November 17, 2017, that growth reached its apex, as Entercom completed its tax-free merger with CBS Radio. Then, a new logo was introduced.
Now, nearly 3 1/2 years after a transformative transaction that saw slow growth at legacy CBS Radio stations due to what Field believed was neglect under its previous owner, a whole new identity has been revealed.
Audacy addressed the company’s evolution since the Reverse Morris Trust-fueled merger with CBS Radio, which saved the former Entercom from a big tax bill from Uncle Sam. Among the big moves: growth in podcasting with the August 2019 acquisition of Cadence13 and Pineapple Street, and a wholesale relaunch of the Radio.com app that came with the CBS Radio merger. There’s also the acquisition of QL Gaming Group and a partnership with FanDuel, fueling its position in Sports Talk audio content delivered via key radio stations like WFAN in New York and via the Radio.com platform.
Speaking of Radio.com, that name will be “sunset,” with a rebrand to Audacy on the way.
Cadence13, Pineapple Street Studios, BetQL and recently acquired podcast influencer marketplace Podcorn remain market-facing brands.
With some self-promotion, Audacy said in a statement released Tuesday (3/30) at 9am Eastern, “Over the past three years, the company has purposefully evolved into a scaled, multi-platform audio content and entertainment organization with the country’s best radio broadcasting group and a leadership position in virtually every segment of the dynamic and growing audio market—including broadcasting, podcasting, digital, network, live experiences, music, sports and news. Audacy is also the No. 1 creator of original, premium audio content.”
In a prepared statement, David Field said, “We have transformed into a fundamentally different and dramatically enhanced organization and so it is time to embrace a new name and brand identity which better reflects who we have become and our vision for the future. ‘Audacy’ captures our dynamic creativity, outstanding content and innovative spirit as we aspire to build the country’s best audio content and entertainment platform.”
Audacy Chief Marketing Officer Paul Suchman added, “This moment is not just a change of sign, but a sign of change. Our new brand encapsulates who we’ve become in audio and will guide our forward aspirations. We are bringing it to life across all touchpoints inside and outside the organization and look forward to delivering on its promise every day.”
A BET ON DIGITAL
With the Entercom Twitter handle changed early Tuesday, ahead of the official announcement, to @audacycorp, a new chapter begins for a company with roots in radio that today made several announcements that signals its intention as of today to be an audio media company.
First, Audacy says it has signed Demi Lovato to an exclusive podcast partnership with Cadence13. It will be produced by OBB Sound, the audio division of OBB Media, and SB Projects. Further details are set to arrive in May. A revamped “Loveline,” pioneered by Audacy’s KROQ-FM in Los Angeles, will debut this summer, in addition to new podcasts and digitally delivered projects from Boomer Esiason and The Rich Eisen Show.
Audacy also has a partnership with BetMGM in place, and this follows a similar partnership announcement revealed last week that ties Audacy with Rush Street Interactive.
Lastly, Entercom has a royalties agreement in place with Irving Azoff’s Global Music Rights (GMR).
A NEW WALL STREET IDENTITY
What happens to ETM?
It’s going away.
The company’s ticker symbol will change from “ETM” to “AUD,” and this is expected to occur on or about Friday, April 9.
— Additional reporting by Ed Ryan