Heads up, ‘this is not a love story’… or maybe it is — a love story driven by commitment, quality content creation, and paying it forward.
Before becoming one of the biggest podcast companies in Southeast Asia, it wasn’t immediate glitz and glam for Podcast Network Asia (PNA). CEO Ron Baetiong and his then lawyer-turned-friend Executive Chairman Josef Acuña knew this much.
Ron wanted a business podcast and Josef wanted a 360 digital content production company. They wanted different paths and businesses in mind, but with a vision to create a company with a purpose. Their process and progress were all deliberate and intentional for moving forward.
And upon moving forward, they made sure that they were paying it forward.
Starting the Start-up
The two were sure that 2019 was the kick-off year. They had their respective day jobs yet pushed through with only one intern and three employees, working on five lined-up shows: The Halo-Halo Show, The KoolPals, Kudazzers, The Eve’s Drop, and The Wrestling-Wrestling Podcast.
At that time, Ron was already knee-deep in his own podcast. His show, Hustleshare Podcast, is where he interviews startup founders about their respective business journeys. He and his guests bonded over their shared experiences and learned from each other about how they dealt with the problems that other podcasters were facing. This way, he could help solve them.
Then, they continued on expanding the network by meeting more voices with distinct stories and relevant dispositions to share.
“It’s not just about making money,” Josef says. “It’s wanting to pay it forward,” Ron finishes the thought, being a podcaster himself.
Ramping up its partnerships, they incorporated and officially launched Podcast Network Asia in September 2019.
After its inception in 2019, the network gained new heights with its chart-topping shows while working fully remotely. This gave podcasters the freedom to record within the comfort of their own homes during the pandemic.
Through word of mouth, the tech and media startup established its reputation of turning podcasts into gems. Podcasters started to pull in their friends into the world of podcasting, making it a chain of referrals that built the empire until to date.
The initial five shows turned 25, which then turned to 190, and now 300 local and international shows. This also led to an expansion in the organizational structure to Indonesia, where three aspiring people were joined by 40-50 passionate employees and interns.
‘Why we do what we do’
As they continuously strive toward success, they will always uphold their commitment to empowering the voices of people and amplifying their stories, opinions, and ideas. Along the process, quality content will never be compromised.
“I wanted to create smart content without dictating what is right and what is wrong… content that [would] make listeners think and educate themselves in the process,” Josef elaborates.
They also recognize how recording, producing, and editing shows can bring an actual impact in changing this world into a much better place.
“We are not editing just to remove the ‘ahhhs’ and the ‘umms’, or the sound of the neighbour’s dog barking. We are editing our nation to be a better world. Where free thinkers can challenge ideas, where entertainment pushes our minds to think, where facts can be entertaining, and where ideas can come from people we choose to trust,” Josef profoundly explains.
He adds, “We are not just producing interesting show formats or catchy sound beds. We are producing a better world where freethinkers and thought-leaders are empowered and sustained. Producing a world where listeners are engaged with new ideas that they may agree to disagree with.”
Working for International Podcasters
Podcast Network Asia achieved its mission to become the biggest podcast network in Asia. Yet it continues to expand more by setting another mission of dominating the international space through Podmachine.
Podmachine, is an AI-powered system that helps podcasters reach their fullest potential with minimal cost. It aims to offers a simple and affordable growth and editing subscription service for podcasters across the globe for as low as 49.99 USD.
In the grand scheme of things
Now, that’s a love story we never thought we would ask for but have always needed to hear. There was the weight of intention, the depth of purpose, and the power of one’s voice.
P.S. For all PNA’s current and future podcasters, Ron would like to remind you that “our team is ready to spread hope, joy, and new insights through your podcasts and we’ll be ready to do this for you and with you for a long time.”
P.P.S. Your work matters. Not just in our little bubble, but in the grand scheme of things.