40-Love: Sinclair Buys Tennis Media Co.

It plans to align Tennis magazine and Tennis.com with its Tennis Channel on a unified platform. It's paying $8 million plus an additional $6 million earn-out potential based on certain contingencies.

Sinclair Broadcast Group is beefing up its tennis portfolio by acquiring Tennis Media Co., the owner of Tennis magazine and Tennis.com, for $8 million plus an additional $6 million earn-out potential based on certain contingencies.

Sinclair says the acquisition will create a unified media platform that combines Tennis.com, the most visited online tennis platform in the world, and Tennis magazine, the sport’s most circulated print publication, with Sinclair’s Tennis Channel, the 24-hour television and multimedia network dedicated to the sport.

It said the transaction was funded with cash on hand.

“The acquisition of Tennis Media Co. brings together tennis’ television, print and online platforms, with significant advantages in the tennis rights and stakeholder world,” said Chris Ripley, president-CEO, Sinclair. “We are committed to enhancing Tennis Channel’s role as the undisputed tennis-media hub, and this combination of the sport’s foremost outlets, along with the Tennis Channel Plus subscription service, will lead to efficiencies that maximize all four platforms.”

Tennis.com garners 25 million monthly page views and 2 million unique monthly visitors, according to Sinclair. The site also houses its Baseline daily newsletter. Tennis Channel is currently expanding its digital activity to complement on-air programming and become more integrated with websites of other Sinclair stations and properties throughout the country, and Sinclair said Tennis.com will play a major part in that integration process.

Likewise, the network will pair Tennis magazine’s No. 1 circulation of 600,000 in its category (the magazine is a partner with the USTA, the sport’s governing body in the United States) with its own expanding subscriber base for the benefit of both assets. Since Tennis Channel was acquired by Sinclair in March 2016, it has jumped from 37 million viewing homes to close to 50 million, according to ComScore, and has deals in place to reach 60 million homes this year.


“Uniting Tennis Channel with Tennis.com and Tennis magazine lets us serve our combined audiences, the tennis community and fans of the sport in a way never seen before,” said Ken Solomon, president, Tennis Channel. “We’ve long been in the business of creating demand for and helping to grow the game of tennis across the country, and now our ability to translate content across these platforms and elevate awareness for the sport is unprecedented. Similarly, advertisers have never had the one-stop-shopping opportunity to sponsor the top print, television and online tennis destinations in the same place, in one transaction.”

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