By Hayley C. Cuccinello Forbes Staff
The self-proclaimed “King of All Media” reigns supreme in the radio world.
Howard Stern, on the third year of his eight-figure contract with SiriusXM, earned an estimated $90 million in our 12-month scoring period, before taxes and fees. The shock jock is once again the world’s highest-paid radio host.
Stern narrowly beats America’s most-listened-to radio host Rush Limbaugh, who made $84.5 million. Both Stern and Limbaugh are making moves in the digital space. Devoted fans can now watch Stern on SiriusXM’s new video service which features highlights from Stern’s 30-year-plus video library. This past January, Limbaugh released his first mobile app, which gave a subscription boost to his digital platform, Rush 24/7.
iHeartMedia host Ryan Seacrest rounds out the top three with a $74 million haul, a massive uptick over last year’s $58 million due to the return of American Idol—and his eight-figure paycheck. The host and producer is busier than ever despite an accusation of sexual misconduct surfacing earlier this year. (Seacrest denied the claims; an investigation found insufficient evidence to support the allegations, which came from a former stylist.)
Fox News star Sean Hannity, who places fourth, is one of the few radio hosts whose radio earnings are on the rise. Hannity earned $36 million in our scoring period with contracts for Fox and Premiere estimated at $15 million and $20 million respectively and adding to his bottom line with speaker fees.
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