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Meghan Markle to launch new podcast on Lemonada after ending $20 million Spotify deal

The Duchess of Sussex will launch her new podcast after a bitter split with Spotify

Amber Raiken
New York
Wednesday 14 February 2024 09:15 GMT
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Related: Prince Harry, Meghan Markle’s new Sussex website slammed for using royal titles, coat of arms

Meghan Markle has revealed that she’ll be launching a new podcast, after she and husband Prince Harry ended their deal with Spotify last year.

On 13 February, Lemonada Media announced its new partnership with the Duchess of Sussex, with the platform set to launch her newest work, as reported by Deadline. However, the title of the podcast and details on what it’s about haven’t been revealed.

In addition, Lemonada will be launching all 12 episodes of Meghan’s Archetypes podcast, which first aired on Spotify last year. The first season of her podcast featured famous guests including Serena Williams, Andy Cohen, Trevor Noah, Paris Hilton, and Constance Wu.

Meghan has also issued a statement to express her excitement about the new podcast and her partnership with Lemonada, which was first founded in 2019 by Jessica Cordova Kramer and Stephanie Wittels Wachs.

“I’m proud to now be able to share that I am joining the brilliant team at Lemonada to continue my love of podcasting,” she said, according to Deadline. “Being able to support a female founded company with a roster of thought provoking and highly entertaining podcasts is a fantastic way to kick off 2024.”

She hinted at her upcoming projects with Lemonada, including why she’s re-releasing Archetypes, which was produced by her and her husband’s programming company, Archewell Productions.

“Our plan to re-release Archetypes so that more people can now have access to it, as well as launching a dynamic new podcast are well in the works,” she continued. “I’m so eager to be able to share it soon, and am overjoyed to be joining the Lemonada family.”

Lemonada – which previously launched the hit Wiser Than Me with Julia Louis-Dreyfus podcast – also issued a statement about working with Meghan. The CEO of the company, Kramer, specified how thrilled she was to bring the duchess’ old and new work to the streaming platform.

“We are beyond honoured that Meghan has trusted us to help democratise access to Archetypes, and that so many more people around the world will have access to the series soon,” Kramer added. “Meghan’s talent as host, creator and conversationalist is unparalleled and we are thrilled to co-create a new series with her that fosters her approach to creating art that matters.”

In June 2023, Spotify and Archwell Audio - the Sussexes’ previous production company – first announced that it was “mutually” parting ways, resulting in the end of Meghan’s podcast after just one season.

As for why the couple ended their deal with Spotify, which was reportedly worth $20m, the Wall Street Journal reported at the time that the pair hadn’t “met the productivity benchmarks required to receive the full payout from the deal”, citing insiders familiar with the matter.

Under the terms of the 2020 deal, Harry and Meghan were signed on to produce and host “programming that uplifts and entertains audiences around the world” in the form of podcasts that championed diverse voices.

In October 2023, the CEO of Spotify, Daniel Ek, discussed why his company ended the deal with the Sussexes, hinting that listeners weren’t as “happy” with Archetypes as expected.

“We thought new innovation was needed to happen here,” he said during an interview with BBC at the time. “We thought we can come in and offer a great experience that both makes consumers very happy and allows new creators new avenues.

“And the truth of the matter is, some of it has worked, some of it hasn’t. We’re learning from those and we are moving on,” he added, before wishing Meghan and Harry the “best of success they can have going forward”.

Meghan’s new podcast announcement comes after she and Harry relaunched their website using their regal titles – the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. The couple’s new site, sussex.com, replaces their former website, archewell.com, and will bring more personal updates about the duke and duchess’s activities.

As you enter the website, a large photo of the pair smiling and clapping at last year’s Invictus Games appears, overlayed with their royal coat of arms and the title “The office of Prince Harry and Meghan, The Duke and Duchess of Sussex”. At the foot of the page, links to the Archewell Foundation, Archewell Productions and their Sussex Royal website appear.

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