Pandora's share of radio listening may be even higher than what they claim

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Issue Date: 
Jan 25 2012 - 11:00am

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New numbers confirm "just how big a share Pandora has amassed"

Using new data from Arbitron, industry news source Inside Radio determines that Pandora's monthly listening is approximately 5% of the total listening of over-the-air radio.
 
A new calculation from Arbitron found that Americans are exposed to 14.6 billion hours of radio every month. That calculation was apparently "created at the request of the company’s clients to give broadcast radio a way to show how it stacks up against Pandora," reports Inside Radio. The publication compared this number to Pandora's own Q3 report to investors to calculate the percentage.

Pandora recently told its investors it logged 2.1 billion listener hours during Q3 (up from around 1 billion the year before; more here). "That equates to an average 700 million listener hours per month or about 5% the size of over-the-air radio," writes Inside Radio. The publication points out that the figure exceeds the percentage Pandora has recently stated.

"Today we only have a bit more than 4% of all radio listening in this country," CEO Joe Kennedy told CNBC earlier this month (more here). Pandora said it represented 2.3% of all radio listening at the end of 2010 (more here).

Arbitron

Inside Radio writes that this confirms "just how big a share Pandora has amassed in just a few short years."

"It’s worth noting that each [Arbitron and Pandora] uses different methodologies," notes Inside Radio. "Arbitron’s figures are based on RADAR’s combined PPM and diary survey estimates (Persons 12+, Mon-Sun 6AM-Mid) while Pandora’s actual server-side numbers come from Triton Digital."

You can subscribe to receive Inside Radio daily here.

RAIN AnalysisRAIN ANALYSIS: RAIN publisher Kurt Hanson calculates -- assuming Pandora's 2.1 billion figure is accurate -- that the webcaster has the equivalent of a 4.8 share of all U.S. radio listening.

That's higher than any number Pandora has ever quoted (though it would be slightly less if Pandora were included in Arbitron's calculation, and it's likely SiriusXM was not included either). -- MS

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