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Photo: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images.

Spotify on Wednesday reported significant ad revenue growth from its podcast business, as part of its quarterly earnings disclosure.

Take a listen: Company founder and CEO Daniel Ek appeared on the Axios Re:Cap podcast to discuss how the podcast business model is changing, why he's spending big on exclusive shows and his personal favorites in both podcasting and music.

Highlights...

Audience: Ek tells Axios that podcast listeners are stickier than music listeners, even though there had been industry concerns that increased podcast content would cannibalize music attention share.

  • He doesn't believe that podcast audience will ever overtake music audience, pointing out that music continues to dominate terrestrial radio.

Exclusives: He does not believe Spotify has editorial responsibility for what is said on its podcasts, including "The Joe Rogan Experience."

  • "We have a lot of really well-paid rappers on Spotify too, that make tens of millions of dollars, if not more, each year from Spotify. And we don't dictate what they're putting in their songs, either."
  • Spotify last year signed an exclusive deal with Kim Kardashian to launch a podcast on criminal justice, and Ek says he hopes it will begin airing "later in the year."

Creators: Ek does not believe that podcast creators will be paid per-stream royalties, as Spotify pays to music creators. He does, however, believe there will be a broadening and acceleration of podcast monetization options.

Rivals: Ek, whose company has accused Apple of anticompetitive practices, says that Apple has an understandable head start in podcasting — pointing out that the very word owes its existence to Apple's iPod devices.

Playlist: One of Ek's favorite podcasts right now is, "Invest Like The Best," hosted by Patrick O'Shaughnessy, while one of his favorite musical artists is African dance hall star Burna Boy.

Go deeper

KKR, Dundee Partners purchase copyrights to more than 62,000 recordings

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

KKR and Dundee Partners have purchased the KMR Music Royalties II portfolio of music copyrights of more than 62,000 recordings from Kobalt Capital for about $1.1 billion.

Why it matters: Music catalogs have become a hot asset over the past year or so, with a number of high-profile artists selling for hundreds of millions of dollars, and investors like KKR amassing hefty collections.

Screen Time with "Ya Fav Trashman" Terrill Haigler

Photo illustration: Axios Visuals, Photo: courtesy of Terrill Haigler

Terrill Haigler has made a name for himself taking away Philly's trash.

  • Better known by his Instagram handle "Ya Fav Trashman," the sanitation worker-turned community activist is a relentless champion for clean streets and an advocate for frontline workers.
  • He's also writing a children's book, which he hopes to release next spring.
Updated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Giuliani associate Lev Parnas convicted of campaign finance crimes

Lev Parnas, a former associate of then-President Donald Trump’s personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Florida businessman Lev Parnas was convicted Friday on charges of conspiracy to make foreign contributions to political campaigns, according to multiple outlets.

Why it matters: Prosecutors said Parnas, then an associate of former President Donald Trump's personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani, funneled over $150,000 from a Russian businessman into U.S. campaigns as part of an effort to land licenses in the U.S.'s legal cannabis industry.