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RAIN 4/16: Pandora CEO Joe Kennedy to address RAIN Summit

Posted on: 04/16/2009


We’re happy to announce our second RAIN Internet Radio Summit keynote address will be given by Pandora CEO Joe Kennedy. Kennedy will tackle the topics of “Innovation & Entrepreneurship.”

Pandora is undoubtedly a leader in the Internet radio space. It boasts the largest audience of any online music site (based on monthly unique visitors) with 22 million registered users. Its simple interface, massive music database (analyzed by human music experts), and popular iPhone and Blackberry apps have helped bring Pandora mainstream recognition (see story in this issue on Sprint’s Now Network television ad).

Kennedy joined Pandora in 2004 following stints at E-LOAN (as President and COO) and Saturn Corporation (as VP/Sales, Service and Marketing). Kennedy has an M.B.A. from Harvard’s Business School and bachelor’s degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from Princeton.

Last week we announced CBS Radio President of Digital Media and Marketing David Goodman as our first keynote, here.


Mobile-delivery platform company FlyCast announced today it has named former Interep CEO and Vice Chairman David Kennedy (pictured left) as Chief Executive Officer. Kennedy also previously served as President and CEO of Susquehanna Media Corp. He’s also been a chairman of the National Association of Broadcasters Joint Board of Directors, and has served as chairman or member of a number of NAB committees.

FlyCast founder and current CEO Sam Abadir will assume Chairman and CTO roles.


Goom Radio U.S. CEO Rob Williams assures the Wall Street Journal “he has fully studied the licensing arrangements” and is confident his soon-to-launch ad-supported Net radio service can succeed. “We designed this from day one as a free service that’s ad-supported,” Williams told WSJ “Venture Capital Dispatch” blogger Ty McMahan. “The entire business plan was built with that in mind. Some companies have had to shift gears, but we’re confident we can offer the best radio experience.”

On Tuesday, Goom Radio announced it had secured a $16 million capital investment (RAIN coverage here). We first covered Goom’s announced launch last month here.

According to the firm, Goom Radio plans to attract the 30-and-under demo by way of several genre-based music streams (as well as preference-based “create-your-own” streams) — and support it with “about three minutes of sponsored content an hour.” Yet other ad-supported online music services continue to suffer weak ad spending in a soft economy coupled with content licensing fees that can total multiples of gross revenue. However, Goom (and its investors) have faith that “The difference is that real music professionals, rather than algorithms, choose the music.”

Williams, according to the blog, “said he’s betting on technology that streams online music in high definition, professional on-air talent that can bring stories and news to provide context around the music, playlist features for users to express themselves and
innovative advertising units that allow brands to sponsor specific stations and other areas of the site.” Read the entire WSJ “Venture Capital Dispatch” here.

By the way, we’re considering adding a session at the RAIN Internet Radio Summit to discuss the $16 million GOOM Radio investment and its implications for broadcasters and entrepreneurs.


A new television commercial for Sprint’s “Now Network” may represent a “first” of sorts: the first television commercial to mention Internet radio.

The ad’s theme relates to everything that’s “happening now” (check out the cool website for the Now Network here), and everything that’s currently happening on Sprint’s 3G newtork (and “bringing you the first 4G network!”). One example of what people are now doing on the wireless network? “Streaming (customizable Internet radio service) Pandora.” Watch the actual commercial below.

We’ll discuss mobile streaming applications and devices at the RAIN Internet Radio Summit Monday in Las Vegas. We hope to see you there. Register here. Thanks to Ando Media founder and CTO Jordan Mendall for the tip.

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  1. The mag reports the news. Don’t hate the player, hate the game.

    Pandora is playing “Clear Channel” online; now it’s actual global clear channel.

    Is this Sprint data real? Sprint’s segment of cellphones and text messages. Some of these claims sound outrageous.

    lee · Apr 17, 02:54 AM · #

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