Axel Springer to acquire stake in Thrillist Media Group

Axel Springer SE is to acquire a minority interest in New York City-based Thrillist Media Group, a digital media company and lifestyle destination for millennial men. Once completed, it will make Axel Springer the largest outside investor in Thrillist Media Group.

Thrillist was founded in 2005 by Ben Lerer, CEO, and Adam Rich, Editor-in-Chief. It reaches 15 million monthly unique visitors to Thrillist.com, and over 80 million a month across its digital, social and mobile platforms, TMG operates the popular lifestyle portal Thrillist along with related daily newsletters and mobile app, with a focus on the sought-after demographic of 18 to 34-year-old men. Thrillist has local editions covering more than 35 cities in the U.S. and Europe. In the last year, Thrillist traffic has seen 100 percent year-over-year growth, with more than 66 percent of traffic coming from mobile.

Mathias Döpfner, CEO of Axel Springer SE, said, “The investment in Thrillist is a further step we are taking to expand our global footprint as a digital publisher, especially in English-language markets. Thrillist has become a first choice, particularly among millennial men. We see strong further potential and are looking forward to close cooperation with Ben, Adam and the whole Thrillist team.”

Ben Lerer, Co-Founder and CEO of Thrillist Media Group, commented, “We are very excited about this announcement. Axel Springer’s track record of success and its deep understanding of the digital media landscape make it an ideal partner as well as a huge asset for our media team as we continue to expand our rapidly growing business.”

The company’s related e-commerce business, JackThreads, is not part of this investment and will in the future be operated as a separate company.

Completion of this transaction is expected in early October.

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