Barack and Michelle Obama have officially left Spotify, signing a multi-million dollar deal with rival Audible.
Obama’s production house, Higher Ground, will team up with an audio company owned by Amazon in an exclusive multi-year contract that was first announced Tuesday.
The move came after several tense years between Spotify and Obama. The two sides have been embroiled in disputes over how much of Higher Ground’s production would include the former U.S. president and first lady.
Obama refused to renew his 2019 contract with Spotify in April. reports this is due to the alleged limitation of Spotify’s exclusive audience, along with the lack of green lighting.
Spotify and the media company Obama have created several programs, including Podcast Michelle Obama i Renegades: Born in the USA.
“At Higher Ground, we have always sought to raise the voices that deserve to be heard – and Audible has been invested in realizing that vision along with us,” former President Obama said in a statement.
“I look forward to partnering with them to tell stories that are not only entertaining but inspiring.”
The contract with Audible gives Obama the opportunity to reach a wider audience than shows previously launched exclusively on Spotify. It is expected to be worth millions of dollars and has already taken effect, although Higher Ground still has to release several episodes and shows from its Spotify contract.
“We are so proud of the stories we have been able to tell at Higher Ground, and there is no one with whom we would rather write our next chapter than Audible,” Ms. Obama said Tuesday.
“Together, we will continue to strive to tell compelling, provocative and profound stories – while doing everything we can to reach people who need to hear them.
Higher Ground’s latest catalog of Spotify shows – which includes Obama’s efforts with Bruce Springsteen, Outlaws: Born in the USA, and Ms. Obama’s own podcast – will remain available on all major podcast platforms, even those that were initially exclusive to Spotify.
“We are incredibly proud of our partnership with Higher Ground and although we have refused to extend our contract, we are excited about the series we have made together and those yet to come in the coming months,” a Spotify spokesman said. Hollywood Reporter.
A Higher Ground spokesman said the two companies “plan to make Audible Originals available to the widest possible audience”.
It was rumored that Obama’s previous contract with Spotify was worth more $ 25 million ($ 37 million). The financial terms of their multi-year contract with Audible remain undisclosed.