Why Jason and Travis Kelce could be the next $100 million podcasters

Why Jason and Travis Kelce could be the next $100 million podcasters
By: market watch Posted On: March 04, 2024 View: 57

Star offensive lineman Jason Kelce retired from the NFL on Monday after 13 seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles, but will continue his burgeoning career as a podcaster.

Jason and his brother Travis Kelce’s “New Heights” podcast, which launched in September 2022, has routinely appeared at No. 1 on various podcast charts on Apple AAPL, -2.54% and Spotify SPOT, +2.37%, and is reportedly being shopped around to media brands, according to a report last week from Bloomberg News.

A new deal for the “New Heights” show could be a massive one, as the market for the top podcasters has been robust in recent years. Last month, Spotify’s Joe Rogan renewed his deal with the streamer for an estimated $250 million and the “SmartLess” podcast moved from Amazon to SiriusXM LSXMK, +0.70% in a $100 million deal.

“Companies want Jason and Travis Kelce’s podcast because of the deep relationship they have with their audiences,” Eric Silver, head of development at Multitude, a podcast collective studio and ad-sales provider, told MarketWatch. “That’s the most important thing in podcasting.”

But with top podcasts getting multimillion-dollar deals, what type of payout could the “New Heights” crew expect?

“I wouldn’t be surprised if it was around the same as ‘SmartLess.’ I wouldn’t be surprised if it was $100 million,” Silver said, while comparing the current market for podcasters to a free-agency period in sports.

The podcast industry has moved away from exclusivity in recent years. For example, popular shows like “The Joe Rogan Experience” and “Call Her Daddy” were once available exclusively for Spotify subscribers, but now are available on all platforms.

Although deals vary across the industry, a company that would pay the Kelces for “New Heights” would be most interested in the advertising money, Silver explained. Essentially a company like Amazon AMZN, -0.36%, or Spotify or iHeartMedia IHRT, -5.31% would pay a certain amount of money to the “New Heights” owners, $100 million for example, and in exchange would keep all or most of the money the show makes from its advertisements or future branding deals.

The podcast, which was already a big hit among football fans, saw a boost when Travis Kelce began dating Taylor Swift last year, leading to more interest and listeners to their show.

Jason Kelce, 36, has made $81.7 million in salary during his 13-year NFL playing career, and Travis Kelce, 34, has made $76.9 million in salary over his 10-year career with the Kansas City Chiefs. Those numbers exclude sponsorship and podcast money.

Representatives for the Kelces did not respond to MarketWatch’s request for comment.

See also: Caitlin Clark is turning pro. Why she could make more money staying in college one more year.

The former Eagles lineman announced his retirement on Monday in a 45-minute press conference where he thanked the city of Philadelphia, his wife, Kylie, and former coach Andy Reid — who now coaches his brother on the Chiefs. Jason Kelce ended his career with 193 regular-season games played, seven Pro Bowl appearances and a Super Bowl championship.

“It has always been a goal of mine to play my whole career in one city,” Jason Kelce said. “I couldn’t have dreamt a better one if I tried.”

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