Google sells Radio Automation business

Moving further away from the radio trade, Google sells its Radio Automation business to WideOrbit, a provider of business management software for media companies.

Google has sold its Radio Automation business to WideOrbit, a provider of business management software for media companies, the search giant announced Wednesday.

Included in the sale were all the assets of Google's radio automation business, including Google Radio Automation, Maestro, and SS32.

Radio automation helps broadcasters manage and program music, ads, and other content through customizable software. Maestro and SS32 are two specific automation systems used by many radio stations.

Started in 1999, San-Francisco-based WideOrbit is considered one of the leading business software providers for broadcast and cable companies. WideOrbit offers several products for media outlets, designed to automate everything from content to ads to billing.

"The acquisition of Google Radio Automation is key to WideOrbit's strategy to expand our product offering and deliver the most advanced and comprehensive solution to radio broadcasters," Eric Mathewson, founder and CEO of WideOrbit, said in a statement. "This acquisition greatly benefits WideOrbit radio customers and Google's radio automation customers alike."

Google entered the radio advertising trade a few years ago as an extension of its Internet advertising. In 2006, the company bought radio ad firm DMarc Broadcasting, which had an automated advertising system. At the time, some industry experts questioned whether Google would find success in this niche market.

Those experts proved prescient. Google announced in February that it would sell its Radio Automation business and exit the broadcast radio trade, cutting 40 employees as a result.

At the time of the sale, Google Radio Automation had about 3,600 customers, who must now be transitioned to WideOrbit. The employees of Google Radio will also move over to WideOrbit, said Google.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

About the author

Journalist, software trainer, and Web developer Lance Whitney writes columns and reviews for CNET, Computer Shopper, Microsoft TechNet, and other technology sites. His first book, "Windows 8 Five Minutes at a Time," was published by Wiley & Sons in November 2012.

 

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