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The Economist sells CQ Roll Call to Fiscalnote, becomes shareholder in poli-tech firm

The Economist has sold political trade CQ Roll Call to government tech firm FiscalNote for $180m / Jorge Alcala via Unsplash

FiscalNote, a Washington, DC-based technology platform that services government officials on an international level, has acquired CQ Roll Call from The Economist Group for $180m.

CQ has provided news, analysis and grassroots advocacy resources for government and political professionals since 1945, with Roll Call acting as the quarterly's its daily counterpart since 1955.

As part of what was called a “strategic acquisition” for the company, the editorial services have now been combined with FiscalNotes AI-powered analytics and issues management services to service Congress, state legislation from all 50 states, and 30 countries worldwide.

The Economist Group, in return, obtained an 18% stake in the company, making it the largest single shareholder. The Group’s chief executive, Chris Stibbs has been added to FiscalNote’s board of directors. In a piece from CQ Roll Call in July, the head had said that FiscalNote had presented a “compelling solution”, allowing him to finally sell off the brand he’d had on the market for years.

Tim Hwang, founder and chief executive of FiscalNote, has retained his post in the deal. He said in a statement: “I am humbled by the opportunity to oversee the next phase of FiscalNote growth while protecting the legacy and tradition of the CQ and Roll Call brands. The combination of FiscalNote’s technology with CQ Roll Call’s non-partisan and unbiased information and analysis creates an exciting opportunity to further our mission of connecting the world to their governments, enabling us to better serve customers and readers.”

Stibbs added: “I have every confidence in Tim’s vision for the combined FiscalNote and in his ability to lead the team to deliver best-in-class product offerings.”

The new deal has made FiscalNote Washington, DC’s largest tech company. The company, situated between the US Capitol Building and the White House, said that it does not look to make any additional leadership announcements and shall focus on evaluating synergies between assets.

Overseeing the merger on the FiscalNote side were West Arrow, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, and Gibson, Dunn and Crutcher LLC. For the Economist Group , transaction partners were Ondra Partners and Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP.

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