Top Spotify executive Bill Simmons has been spotted for the first time after labeling Prince Harry and Meghan Markle ‘f**ing grifters’ following the Sussexes’ split with the music streaming giant.
Simmons, 53, Spotify’s head of podcast innovation and monetization, was seen chatting on the phone with earbuds as he walked through a downtown Los Angeles parking lot on his way to work.
Despite signing a $20 million deal three years ago, the streaming executive has not commented on the former royal’s recent rant in which he slammed the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
Spotify and Sussex-based production company Archewell Audio released a joint statement on Thursday evening saying they had ‘mutually agreed to part ways and are proud of the series we have created together’.
“The***ing grifter,” Simmons said Friday when he slated the pair on an episode of his own platform, The Bill Simmons Podcast.
Spotify and the Sussexes said last week that they had ‘mutually agreed to part ways and are proud of the series we have created together’. Meghan and Harry seen at the Miss Foundation Women of Vision Awards in New York, May 16, 2023
Simmons, 53, Spotify’s head of podcast innovation and monetization, was spotted mumbling through a parking lot in downtown Los Angeles after a slate in Sussex on Monday.
In a recent episode, Simmons told guest sports journalist Ryan Russillo: ‘The fa*ing grifter. We should have launched this podcast with them.’
‘I had to get drunk one night and tell the Zoom story I had with Harry to try and help with a podcast idea. This is one of my best stories,’ he added.
Simmons was talking to Rasillo about basketball and a potential NBA trade on his sports-oriented podcast when the conversation turned to Meghan and Harry.
Confronted about her comments while starting work in downtown Los Angeles on Monday, Simmons did not comment on her anger.
‘What happened to the podcast, Bill?’ Simmons was asked. ‘I’m on a business call. I can’t talk now, I’m sorry,’ he said as he entered the lift.
Simmons first gained notoriety with his website The Boston Sports Guy where he began writing sports columns. It was successful enough that he was picked up by ESPN in the early 2000s, eventually writing for its Page 2 section and then headlining its blog Grantland.
While at ESPN, he was at one point the most read sports writer in America.
After leaving ESPN, and a brief failed venture with HBO, Simmons launched his own website, The Ringer, in 2016. The outlet focuses on sports and pop culture as well as podcasts.
Ringer was then sold to Spotify in 2020 for $200 million. Simmons still retains CEO and editorial control of the outlet.
He joined Spotify as an executive leading podcast innovation and monetization where he worked with Sussex on their somewhat underpowered podcast initiative.
Bill Simmons has been seen for the first time since labeling Prince Harry and Meghan Markle ‘f**ing grifters’ on Monday following the Sussexes’ split with the music streaming giant.
The streaming executive did not comment on his recent condemnation of former royals in which he slammed the Duke and Duchess of Sussex after producing just one 13-episode series of a podcast.
Simmons said Friday while slated for the pair on an episode of his own podcast, The Bill Simmons Podcast.
Spotify and Sussex-based production company Archewell Audio released a joint statement on Thursday evening, saying they had ‘mutually agreed to part ways and are proud of the series we have created together’.
The Duchess of Sussex’s move to quit the Archetypes podcast follows months of talk about renewing it for a second series. Two photos taken at the Nelson Mandela Centenary Exhibition at the Southbank Centre, on July 17, 2018
Megan signed off her 13th and final Archetype episode with a cheeky poem about surviving – but didn’t mention a potential second series.
But this is not the first time he has criticized the couple. Last January, in another episode of her podcast, she blasted Harry, saying it was ’embarrassing’ to be associated with the same company.
‘Shoot this man at the sun,’ he said. ‘I am so tired of this man. What does he bring to the table?
‘He just whines about s*** and keeps doing interviews. Who gives as ***? Who cares for your life? You weren’t even a favorite boy.
‘You live in f****** Montecito and you just sell documentaries and podcasts and nobody cares what you say about anything unless you talk about the royal family and you just complain about them.’
The Duchess of Sussex’s move to ax the Archetypes podcast, which explores ‘the labels that try to hold women back’, follows months of talk of renewing it for a second series.
Insiders close to the audio giant claimed that the royal couple did not meet the productivity criteria required to be paid in full, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Markle, however, still plans to create more podcasts and find a new home for her series, which previously featured her friend and tennis star Serena Williams, pop sensation Mariah Carey and South African comedian Trevor Noah.
Meghan Markle’s Spotify podcast Archetypes won’t be renewed for second season
Bill Simmons, who sold his podcast and sports journalism company The Ringer to Spotify for $20 million, now serves as Spotify’s head of podcast innovation. He is pictured at the Grammy Museum on March 23, 2023 in Los Angeles.
After sources close to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex claimed the pair would stop making Netflix documentaries, publish memoirs and sit for interviews to discuss the royal family, because they have ‘nothing left to say’.
The talent agency that recently signed Meghan, WME, told the Wall Street Journal: ‘The team behind Archetypes is proud of the podcast they create on Spotify. Megan continues to develop more content for the Archetypes audience on other platforms.’
The podcast topped Spotify’s charts the week it premiered.
Megan signed off with a defiant poem about surviving her 13th and final Archetype episode – but made no mention of a potential second series.
Closing the ceremony, which featured men for the first time, he quoted the post-war Greek poet Dinos Christianopoulos as saying: ‘What did you not do to bury me? But you forget that I am a seed.’
Talks are underway to release more content from Archewell, the Wall Street Journal reported.
There are also suggestions that Meghan may soon look to bring back her wellness and lifestyle blog The Tig to rival Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop website, which is valued at $250 million.
Since officially leaving the Royal Family and moving to California in 2020, the Duke and Duchess have pursued various avenues to bring in revenue.
This includes Prince Harry’s bombshell memoir Spare which he produced as part of a $20 million deal with Penguin Books.
The couple also teamed up with Netflix to produce a docu-series called Harry & Meghan, with the streaming giant reportedly paying the pair $100 million for the six-episode series.
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