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Yahoo and Clear Channel Forge Digital Radio Partnership

Bob Pittman Headshot - P 2012
Getty Images
Clear Channel CEO Bob Pittman

The content of both companies will be cross-promoted on iHeartRadio.com

Yahoo and Clear Channel have anounced a distribution and cross-promotional deal.

As part of the multi-year agreement, Yahoo will begin using Clear Channel's iHeartRadio platform as its digital radio service and the station will promote both companies' content. In addition, the new joint venture will offer exclusive access to various concert series and other music events, including the two-day iHeartRadio Music Festival in September at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

This is the first agreement between the two giants.

According to Clear Channel CEO Bob Pittman, the deal was forged after Yahoo's interim CEO Ross Levinsohn suggested it.

"We were thrilled when Ross approached us about this partnership," said Pittman in a statement. "We like the direction Yahoo! is going and by working together we can accelerate growth for the both of us."

Yahoo has recently been forging content relationships with the likes of ABC News and CNBC and has indicated a newfound focus on its online ad business for its media properties.

"This partnership will expand our ability to provide consumers and advertisers with the best premium content available and provide Clear Channel with unmatched digital reach," says Levinsohn.

Clear Channel, the biggest player in terrestrial radio, has been looking to bolster its digital business. Most notably, the company signed a pathbreaking deal with the Big Machine Label Group, home to Taylor Swift, Tim McGraw, Rascal Flatts and others. The agreement allowed Clear Channel to bypass SoundExchange -- which sets rates for digitally streamed music that some have deemed to be expensive -- in favor of a direct profit sharing deal.

The latest deal marks another noteworthy agreement for Clear Channel.

As part of the new partnership, both entities will exploit their significant assets to promote each other's content. According to the companies, the Yahoo! Media Network reaches more than 167 million monthly online users and Clear Channel stations reach 237 million monthly listeners across 150 markets.

E-mail: eriq.gardner@thr.com

Twitter: @eriqgardner