Rococo Punch, the independent podcast production studio behind The Turning series and Welcome to Provincetown, has been acquired by the full-service podcast and audiobook company Audily.
Led by co-founders and public radio veterans Jessica Alpert and John Perotti, Rococo Punch will continue as a standalone brand within Audily. The studio will continue to develop original productions and contract with other media companies for work-for-hire projects. RPLabs, which has created educational audio programming for partners like Boston University and the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, will also continue within the Rococo Punch brand.
Alpert and Perotti will continue to lead Rococo Punch and report up to Matt Wells, the co-founder and president of Audily, as part of the acquisition. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“Jessica and John are the content dream-team of podcasting, and we are thrilled to welcome them and the Rococo Punch team into the Audily family,” Wells said in a statement. “Together, we will expand our service offering and creative content to a broader audience, and we can’t imagine better partners to tackle this growing industry.”
The acquisition comes as podcast studios look to build back momentum during a slower market and major audio companies like Spotify become more judicious with content spending. For smaller podcast studios that specialize in premium narrative projects, which tend to be more expensive than always-on shows and may have a harder time raking in ad dollars due to the limited number of episodes in a series, an acquisition like the Rococo Punch–Audily deal can help sustain the business for the long term.
Alpert, formerly a managing producer at Boston’s WBUR, said Rococo Punch has been “working towards this moment” and that Audily will give the studio the “fuel” to “create even more value in the space.” “We’re two companies with incredibly talented teams, and together we can build an even stronger foundation that allows for creative innovation,” Alpert said.
Perotti, who serves as Rococo Punch’s chief content officer, pointed to the “constantly shifting” audio market as one of the key reasons for the studio to join Audily, which launched in 2022 under the VC firm nth Venture and, like other nth Venture studio companies, is owned by its employees. “When two independents come together, we can do much bigger things,” Perotti said. “Rococo Punch’s thoughtful storytelling will continue to be the focus of our work.”