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Group Nine Media Mergers and Acquisitions Media

Group Nine to buy female title Popsugar to build 'next-gen' media model


By John McCarthy, Opinion Editor

October 7, 2019 | 3 min read

Group Nine Media, owner of The Dodo, The Thrillist and NowThat, is to acquire Popsugar, the women's digital lifestyle brand.

Group Nine at last year's NewFronts

Group Nine acquires female title Popsugar to build 'next-gen' media model

Less than a week after rival Refinery29 was snapped up by Vice, Group Nine Media has announced that it will acquire Popsugar, and a sizeable female audience. It is believed to have offered a $300m in all-stock deal for the profitable media company.

Group Nine now claims to reach 70% of US millennials across its media stable, a potentially desirable audience for advertisers. It boasts a reach of 150m US adults across 30 platforms and brands.

Ben Lerer, chief executive of Group Nine, said: "When we started Group Nine almost three years ago by combining Thrillist, NowThis, The Dodo, and Seeker, we foresaw the impending consolidation of the industry and set out to create a model for the next-generation media company with significant scale, deeply loyal and engaged audiences, multiplatform expertise, and highly diversified revenue."

He added that the title "hugely" expands its reach into an "important demographic" and praised its "proven ability to diversify its revenue across premium advertising, affiliate, direct-to-consumer commerce, licensing, and experiential channels.”

Lisa Sugar, founder and president of Popersugar, added: “We’re a welcoming voice that resonates with all women across all of her passion points. That trust factor and strong brand identity has enabled us to expand into consumer products — like our Must Have subscription boxes, our Beauty by Popsugar line, and our RTW collection with Kohl’s — and has paved the way for our flagship festival, Popsugar Play/Ground. The Group Nine brands share a similar passionate connection with their audiences as well as an ethos of optimism and action that truly excites me as we become part of the Group Nine portfolio.”

The combined entity has more than 200m social media followers across Facebook, Snap, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram.

Furthermore, it claims the "fastest-growing production studio business in the digital industry". Its content has run beyond its own properties on the likes of Discovery, Netflix, Comedy Central, Amazon, and Hulu.

Additional revenue diversification comes from "powerful cross-platform advertising solutions" and opportunities in commerce, licensing, events and brand extensions.

This comes a month after Group Nine raised $50m in funding from Discovery and Axel Springer SE.

Group Nine Media Mergers and Acquisitions Media

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