Five audio-services companies announced today that they’re merging to create SoundStack, an audio-as-a-service platform intended to accelerate audio innovation for creators, media companies, and advertisers. SoundStack, based in Pittsburgh, represents the combination of the audio-services companies Media Creek, EmpireStreaming, Abovecast, AudioCatapult and Live365. Live365will continue to operate as a separate brand.
Media Creek itself was formed in 2017 through the combination of EmpireStreaming, Live365 and Abovecast. The CEO of the combined SoundStack is Jon Stephenson, who had been CEO of Media Creek.
All of these companies provide a variety of services to media operators across a number of vertical sectors, including radio, magazines, corporations, micro-podcasters, pure-play music services and others. The services they offer include on-demand and streaming audio, content delivery, advertising sales and ad management, and dedicated hosting.
SoundStack’s flagship product, SoundStack Engine, seeks to seamlessly integrate and automate audio streaming, podcasting, and monetization in a single platform, SoundStack said in a press release.
The company describes the product as the audio industry’s first platform that fully automates and supports streaming, podcasting, and monetization, with an intuitive UI and developer-friendly API that enables platforms and publishers with the ability to create live streams, podcast delivery, and more across a global network built to scale.
In addition, SoundStack Engine enables reporting, analytics, measurement and a speed to market that leads to measurable ROI. This added focus on monetization gives publishers the necessary tools and information to propel their business models and profits. In 2021 alone, SoundStack paid publishers 50% more compared to 2020.
“We’re obsessed with making digital audio intuitive for our customers and we have decades of experience to connect the dots that others may not see,” Stephenson said. “As a perfectly independent platform-agnostic technology company, we have the responsibility to innovate and accelerate audio for all of our partners, regardless of size, and to support the audio industry as a whole.”
“SoundStack was built in response to fragmented proprietary solutions created over the last few years by major audio companies. It's time to give audio publishers and platforms a service that can work across boundaries, letting publishers truly optimize their technical and operational setup and maximize their ad revenue,” Stephenson added.
As part of the creation of SoundStack, Rockie Thomas, a publisher-side digital audio expert with experience from AdsWizz, will serve as CRO, and Mike Reznick, a programmatic and podcasting pioneer who worked at Triton Digital, was named COO. Both had been with the Media Creek team.