Biglari Holdings Acquires Maxim From Alpha Media Group|
Biglari Holdings has acquired Maxim from Alpha Media Group for an undisclosed amount. Maxim is a men's lifestyle media brand. It includes the Maxim men's magazine, which Alpha says reaches 9 million readers monthly.
Biglari Holdings is best known for its restaurant companies, which include Western Sizzlin' and the Steak and Shake chain. It also has a real estate development company and design company among its subsidiary companies. Biglari says Maxim will continue to be operated by its current team. Maxim will also retain its New York City headquarters.
Sardar Biglari, Chairman and CEO of Biglari Holdings, said in the announcement, "As the new owner, we look forward enthusiastically to making long-term investments in pursuit of revitalizing the Maxim brand. Maxim's inclusion into our collection of companies will benefit from our financial strength. We plan to build the business on multiple dimensions, thereby energizing our readership and viewership."
Posted on February 28, 2014
The Baltimore Sun Media Group (BSMG) has acquired the City Paper from Times-Shamrock Communications. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. BSMG will officially take charge of the City Paper on March 12th.
BSMG CEO Tim Ryan said in a statement, "This represents a great opportunity to add another successful media property to our portfolio. This acquisition will allow us to build upon the existing success of the City Paper. We want the paper to remain a valued alternative, independent voice in Baltimore. That's what made it attractive to us - it's adding a unique population of readers to our overall audience."
A City Paper blog post about the acquisition says the City Paper's editorial and sales teams will remain independent from the Baltimore Sun. A Baltimore Sun story says "All two dozen or so City Paper employees will lose their Times-Shamrock jobs at the start of March." Jim Romenesko says everyone at the paper was reportedly fired, but told they could possibly be rehired.
Jennifer Marsh has been named general manager of the City Paper. The Baltimore Sun says Marsh began her career at the paper and "held its top leadership role in 2011" before joining the Sun in 2013.
Posted on February 22, 2014
Simon & Schuster Launches 250 Words, a Website About Business Books
Simon & Schuster has launched 250 Words, a website about the world of business books. The site will feature original essays no longer than 250 words by authors from all publishing houses. The site will also interview business leaders and provide book recommendations from them. 250 Words will also review business books from all houses. The website is located at 250words.com.
The site is edited by Sam McNerney. Some of the articles will be cross-published on Fortune.com.
Carolyn K. Reidy, President and CEO of Simon & Schuster, said in the announcement, "Business books have long had a strong and devoted readership, and we think that 250 Words can fill the need for a smart, highly-curated site dedicated to the best in this thriving category. In establishing 250 Words as a publisher-agnostic site, we believe we can foster a community that will better serve authors and readers by bringing attention to the books that are of the most interest to them, regardless of the source."
Image: Simon & Schuster
Posted on February 9, 2014
Chicago Tribune Launches Trivia App
Chicago Tribune has launched the Tribune Trivia app used trivia questions crafted from Tribune archive articles. Some of the categories including sports, entertainment, food, music, and Chicago history. Questions are categorized as easy, medium and hard. The app is available for Facebook, Android or iOS. It can be downloaded at TribuneTrivia.com.
Joseph Schiltz, senior vp of marketing for Tribune Publishing says, "We are excited about the launch of Tribune Trivia given the positive feedback we have received thus far. The app is another way to engage with our audience and share our rich collection of Tribune storytelling."
Image: Chicago Tribune
Posted on January 26, 2014
F+W Media Acquires New Track Media
F+W Media has announced the acquisition of New Track Media, a publisher of arts and crafts magazines and a leading astronomy title. Some of New Track Media's titles include American Woodworker, Creating Keepsakes, Quilter's Home and Sew News. New Track also publishes Sky & Telescope.
David Nussbaum, chairman and ceo of F+W, says in a statement, "The New Track strategy closely mirrors that of F+W Media. From a two-dimensional publisher, to a multi-channel content and commerce company. The team has had good success building their digital media and direct-to-consumer ecommerce offerings; we'll immediately focus on taking those businesses to the next level."
F+W says the New Track acquisition will also add a direct-to-consumer catalog businesses with more than 12 million members and revenues in the tens of millions. F+W has closed three craft-related acquisitions in the past 18 months. These include Interweave, Martha Pullen Company and Love Sewing.
Folio reports that F+W tells them there are no plans in place to close any of the publications after the acquisition closes.
Posted on January 20, 2014
AOL Finds Partner to Run Patch Local News Service
AOL has found a partner, Hale Global, to run Patch, its local news service. The deal was announced on January 15. Hale Global will have full control over Patch, while AOL retains a minority interest. Reuters reports that AOL investors wanted AOL to stop spending so much money on Patch.
Hale Global says it is committed to patch. Hale Global CEO Charles Hale said in a statement, "We are committed to bringing users, local businesses, writers and advertisers together into a Patch experience full of innovation and growth. Along with AOL, we are committed to taking the necessary steps to ensure Patch remains a vibrant part of the community."
Patch currently offers local news for 22 states and the District of Columbia. Even though AOL has found a partner for Patch the future of the service still remains uncertain. Fox Business is reporting that Patch may be dismantled and its assets sold in pieces.
Posted on January 17, 2014
Oyster, an Ebook Subscription Service, Raises $14 Million
Oyster, a subscription ebook service, has raised $14 million. The company currently offers access to over 100,000 books from over 500 publishers for $9.95 a month.
Crain's New York reports that the startup is aiming to be like a Netflix for books. Crain's also says Oyster raised $14 million in a Series A round. Oyster plans to expand from ten employees to 25 to 30 with new hires.
Oyster currently offer access to its ebooks through an iOS app. Crain's reports that an Android app is planned for 2014. The key to the company's success will be how many publishers, particularly major publishers, they can get to sign up. The company recently cute a deal with the Perseus Books Group.
Posted on January 16, 2014
Yahoo Launches Yahoo Tech and Yahoo Food
Yahoo has launched new vertical sites, Yahoo Tech and Yahoo Food. The Yahoo Food homepage is pictured above. The new website were launched at CES 2014. TechCrunch reports that Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer said a keynote that "Digital magazines are a core part of our long-term vision." This mean you can expect more such sites from Yahoo that focus on a particular subject.
Yahoo Tech is led by former New York Times tech columnist David Pogue. Rafe Needleman is the editorial director of Yahoo Tech. Some of the sections include Columns, Reviews, How To and Kickstarter Reviews. Pogue has a couple sections to himself, include Pogue Videos and Ask Pogue.
Yahoo Food is led by Managing Editor Sarah McColl. USA Today reports that the site has recently hired from Bon Appetit and Huffington Post Food. Some of the tabs on Yahoo Food include The Healthy Stuff, Restaurants, Chefs, Kitchen Hacks and Comfort Food. The site continues to load new content as you scroll down the page.
Posted on January 7, 2014
AARP Revamps iPad App
AARP has revamped its AARP Publications App. The App features content from the AARP website and two AARP publications: AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. Some of the content includes celebrity videos, audio interviews, new music and book samples, step-by-step recipes, slide shows and quizzes.
Myrna Blyth, editorial director for AARP Media, said in a statement, "Today's announcement demonstrates AARP's ongoing commitment to deliver the best experience for our 50+ audience across multiple platforms. Our readers will now have easier access to their favorite AARP publications on the go, and can experience them in new, interactive ways. We are also looking forward to providing a wide variety of digital exclusives developed by our editorial team."
The new app is available here on iTunes.
Posted on January 6, 2014
Nerdist Industries Launches Nerdist News
Nerdist Industries has announced the launch of Nerdist News. The video news service will be hosted by Jessica Chobot. Nerdist News will initially air every Monday, Wednesday and Friday with plans to expand to a 5-day a week format. The news videos will be available on the Nerdist YouTube channel. They will be 3 to 5 minutes in length.
Chris Hardwick, founder and CEO of Nerdist Industries, said in the announcement, "I adore Chobot. We worked together for years at G4. She is not only an excellent host who happens to be hilarious, but when it comes to gaming and the pop culture sphere Nerdist inhabits, she is the REAL DEAL. Ever since we started the channel, I've wanted to expand into daily news and Jessica is the PERFECT human to take us in this new direction."
Here is the first episode. Take a look:
Posted on November 5, 2013