The respective parent companies of Variety and The Hollywood Reporter announced a joint venture Wednesday that effectively merges the two oldest and biggest show business trade publications, housing them in a joint venture controlled by Variety and Deadline owner Penske Media Corp.
The deal for SheKnows Media’s network of female-focused sites and the BlogHer conference business is the latest acquisition for Penske Media, which recently bought a controlling stake in the owner of Rolling Stone.
PMC chief Jay Penske has closed a $100 million deal to acquire a controlling interest in Wenner Media, the parent company of the venerable rock music bible Rolling Stone. Jann Wenner, who founded the magazine in 1967 with Ralph Gleason in San Francisco, will still be involved and will take the role of editorial director. His son, Gus Wenner, will continue as president-COO. PMC also owns Deadline Hollywood, Variety, WWD, IndieWire and The Robb Report.
Following Jay Penske’s purchase of competitor Variety, the founder of Deadline.com wants to buy back control of the website or start a new one. “Jay Penske shared my vision of what Deadline could be, [but] now circumstances have changed with the addition of Variety and the issue is whether this shared vision is still intact,” Finke says. “One of the most noble things Jay Penske could ever do would be to give me back Deadline.”
The Hollywood Reporter admitted to stealing code from Penske Media Corp., parent company of rivals Deadline Hollywood and Variety, as part of a recent settlement the two companies reached to end their year-and-a-half-old legal dispute.
Variety, the century-old entertainment trade newspaper once considered the bible of the movie industry, has been sold to online publisher Jay Penske and private equity firm Third Point LLC, the companies said today. Penske Media Corp and Third Point paid about $25 million to buy the money-losing, 107-year-old newspaper from medical and technical publisher Reed Elsevier.
Reed Elsevier, looking to unload the 107-year-old title, its last remaining North American trade magazine, has been forced to cut Variety‘s asking price by more than 25% and offer “seller financing” to close the deal. The publishing giant hopes the moves entice one of the two remaining serious suitors, Jay Penske’s Penske Media Corp. or Marc Lasry’s Avenue Capital, to cross the finish line.