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Spotify’s Multi-Million Dollar Deal With Prince Harry And Meghan Markle Has Ended!

Harry and Megan, who are now known as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, initially signed a deal with Spotify in December 2020. Now after only delivering one project under the deal, Spotify has ended their deal due to more reasons than one. The pair aren’t the only high-profile couple with whom Spotify has cut a pact with in previous years, Barack and Michelle Obama’s exclusive podcast deal also ended a year ago due to Spotify declining to renew the pact. Spotify has also begun to restructure its podcast division, which resulted in a high number of layoffs at the company earlier this month.

Why did Spotify end the royal couple’s podcast deal?

Archewell Audio first began this exclusive podcast deal with Spotify in late 2020, when the company’s mission was to “build communities through shared experience, narratives and values.” Spotify believed that the podcasts the Duke and Duchess would come out with, would surely “elevate underrepresented voices.” According to Variety, Spotify had expected more content from Archewell Audio in three years than it provided, only delivering one series that ran for a single season only. This show was Megan’s ‘Archetypes’ in which she deconstructed the history of societal stereotypes about women, and interviewed many prominent figures in the entertainment industry. According to another unnamed source, in recent years both Prince Harry and Meghan have wanted to move away from exclusive Spotify distribution and to find a more widespread home for their audio projects.

“Spotify and Archewell Audio have mutually agreed to part ways and are proud of the series we made together.”

A joint statement issued by the two companies

How much was Meghan and Harry’s Spotify deal worth?

Archewell Audio’s podcasting deal with Spotify was worth approximately $20 million, according to the Journal. The exact figure has been unclear and previously, industry sources cited by Forbes believed it was valued at up to $15-18 million, and another report put it as high as $25 million. Even though ‘Arcehtypes’ became the top podcast on Spotify in multiple countries following its debut and also won a People’s Choice Award in December, it was still not enough. Apparently, the Sussexes did not meet Spotify’s “productivity benchmark” and therefore were not able to milk the full payout from the deal by the time it ended.