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The agency has signed London-based Goalhanger Podcasts, which the former Barcelona and Leicester footballer set up in January with Tony Pastor and former BBC podcast executive Jack Davenport. It comes after Lineker and Pastor set up TV production company Goalhanger Films, which has produced sports docs including Wayne Rooney: The Man Behind the Goals and Hand of God, in 2015.
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It comes on the back of a number of growing audio series for the company including The Rest Is History, The Rest Is Politics and Match of the Day: Top Ten. These three shows have collective monthly downloads of around 5M.
The Rest is History, which is fronted by historians Tom Holland and Dominic Sandbrook, has around 2.7M downloads a month, and The Rest is Politics, which is hosted by Tony Blair’s former Comms Chief Alastair Campbell and Tory politician Rory Stewart, has scored 900,000 per month, despite being less than twelve weeks old.
Agent Alex Bewley has been growing WME’s international podcast presence over the last five years with shows such as Casefile, Table Manners and Idris and Sabrina Elba’s Coupledom, as well as Noiser, Stak, Chalk & Blade and Rusty Quill.
Meanwhile, the U.S. team, which is overseen by podcasting chief Ben Davis, works with the likes of Malcolm Gladwell’s Pushkin Industries, Pod Save America producer Crooked Media and Rob Lowe, who hosts his own Literally! show.
“Podcasting has become a huge part of what we do and I’ve loved getting involved both in front of the microphone and behind the scenes. In three years we’ve gone from recording pods on my kitchen table to producing history and politics shows which are being downloaded 5 million times a month. We’ve got big plans to expand our output, with some really exciting shows in the pipeline,” said Lineker.
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