Media Development Investment Fund acquires majority stake in South Africa’s Mail & Guardian

MDIF Media Development Investment FundMedia Development Investment Fund, a New York-based not-for-profit investment fund for independent media in emerging markets, has acquired a majority stake in South African media company Mail & Guardian. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

The restructured ownership sees M&G’s Chief Executive Officer, Hoosain Karjieker, acquire a minority stake in the business as part of a Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) transaction.

The Mail & Guardian is an award-winning South African title edited by Khadija Patel who was this week named as one of Africa’s leading talents by the New African magazine.

Trevor Ncube, the newspaper’s former publisher, said “My partner for 14 years, the MDIF, under the leadership of Harlan Mandel have put forward a compelling case plan that will ensure the survival of the M&G well into the future. Ownership of the M&G is equivalent to carrying a baton that gets passed on from generation to generation with just this underlying principle: Editorial independence is sacrosanct. I have often said my role over the past 25 years has been more of a custodian of a great South African asset, than an owner.”

USA, New York, NY & South Africa, Johannesburg

Groupe Lexis Media acquires 12 Transcontinental Media publications

Lexis MediaGroupe Lexis Media has acquired 12 of Transcontinental Inc.‘s publications, as well as their related web properties, with 75 employees of these various publications and 16 employees from TC Media’s Production team being transferred to the buyer. With the completion of this transaction, 60% of the publications included in the sale process of TC Media’s local and regional newspapers in Quebec and Ontario, launched in April 2017, are now in the hands of local owners. The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Transcontinental is Canada’s largest printer with operations in print, flexible packaging, publishing and digital media and has more than 7,000 employees in Canada and the United States, and revenues of C$2.0 billion in 2016. Their mission is to create products and services that allow businesses to attract, reach and retain their target customers.

The newspapers acquired by Groupe Lexis Media are: Le Citoyen Rouyn-Noranda, Le Citoyen de la Vallee-de-l’Or, L’Echo Abitibien and La Frontiere, distributed in Abitibi-Temiscamingue; L’Action D’Autray, L’Action – Wednesday Edition, L’Action – Weekend Edition, L’Express Montcalm and Hebdo Rive-Nord, in Lanaudiere; Le Bulletin, La Petite-Nation and La Revue, in Outaouais.

Mr. Frederic Couture, President of Groupe Lexis Media, said: “Since its beginnings, Lexis Media has carved out a prominent position for itself in the media industry by bringing on a passionate editorial team and collaborators, and highly professional sales representatives. We intend to carry on this tradition as we confidently embark on this new phase of our development.”

Canada, Montreal & St-Bruno-de-Montarville, Quebec

 

CloserStill acquires Online Educa Berlin

CloserStillCloserStill Media is to acquire Online Educa Berlin, a cross-sector conference on technology-

supported learning and training, from ICWE GMbH for an undisclosed sum. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Founded in Berlin, Germany in 1995, OEB is an annual international conference on technology-supported learning and training (e-learning), welcoming over 2,000 delegates from across the corporate, education and public sectors, and including an exhibition featuring more than 80 international Edtech companies and institutions.

The acquisition will complement CloserStill’s existing event brand, Learning Technologies, which has events in Paris and London.

Commenting on the acquisition and the launch plans for Learning Technologies Germany in 2018 alongside OEB, CloserStill’s learning group director, Mark Penton, said: “We are genuinely excited to bring the highly respected OEB event into our family of market-leading events and to work with its founder Rebecca Stromeyer.

“We see a significant opportunity to evolve OEB into one of Europe’s most important learning events with the introduction of our Learning Technologies brand into the heart of the European marketplace.”

Germany, Berlin, UK, London

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Euromoney acquires TowerXchange

Euromoney plcEuromoney Institutional Investor PLC has acquired Seven Site Media Limited, trading as TowerXchange. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

TowerXchange is an information and events business which has become a source of information on the tower market, the infrastructure supporting the growth of the mobile telecoms market. Acquiring TowerXchange is part of Euromoney’s telecoms strategy to facilitate industry collaboration and trading in areas ranging from pricing to standards across the telecoms ecosystem. 

Rosalind Irving, Euromoney Divisional Director responsible for its telecoms businesses, said: “TowerXchange is an excellent business which serves an increasingly important part of telecoms infrastructure. It is strategic for Euromoney because it is highly complementary to the markets served by TelCap, BroadGroup (in which we invested in March) and Layer123 (acquired in April). We look forward to working with the expert TowerXchange team.”

UK, London

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PenskeMedia acquires FashInvest

PensPenske Media CorporationkeMedia Corporation and its subsidiary Fairchild Media today announced the acquisition of FashInvest, the innovator in connecting the fashion-tech, fashion, retail, and branded consumer goods sectors with the finance and investment sectors. This acquisition follows Penske Media and its subsidiary Fairchild Media’s acquisition last month of Sourcing Journal, a media brand for global executives focused on the sourcing and manufacturing industries. The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

FashInvest, known for being “where fashion meets finance,” began as a series of educational industry events in 2009 and has rapidly evolved to now be a leading global media resource. FashInvest’s daily online news posts, reports, and exclusive interviews on the emerging fashion tech and fashion arenas have established it as a news authority for a growing number of fashion-tech and fashion entrepreneurs seeking the latest news on who has received funding, who is providing the funding, and what strategies are attracting financing.

“FashInvest has tapped into the vital intersection of finance and fashion—a business that has been built over the last decade on discovering and developing emerging fashion and retail brands and their access to capital markets.  Fairchild Media has consistently been the leader in coverage of well-established global fashion brands, and with the acquisition of FashInvest the opportunity to deepen our coverage of emerging companies, start-ups, and the financial institutions (VC’s, Private Equity, etc.) that are shaping the future fashion industry is dramatically enhanced,” said PMC Chairman and CEO Jay Penske.

USA, New York, NY, Wilmington, DE

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Meredith Corporation To Acquire Time Inc. To Create Premier Media And Marketing Company

Time Inc.Meredith Corporation has announced that it has entered into a binding agreement to acquire all outstanding shares of Time Inc. for $18.50 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at $2.8 billion, expected to close during the first quarter of calendar 2018.

The deal will create a diversified media and marketing company with $4.8 billion in revenues, including $2.7 billion of advertising revenues. Additionally, Meredith anticipates generating cost synergies of $400 million to $500 million in the first full two years of operation.

Time Inc. is a multinational mass media corporation which owns and publishes over 100 magazine brands, including its namesake Time, Sports Illustrated, Travel + Leisure, Food & Wine, Fortune, People, InStyle, Life, Golf Magazine, Southern Living, Essence, Real Simple, and Entertainment Weekly. It also has subsidiaries which it co-operates with the UK magazine house Time Inc. UK, whose major titles include What’s on TV, NME, Country Life, and Wallpaper. Time Inc. also co-operates over 60 websites and digital-only titles.

“We are creating a premier media company serving nearly 200 million American consumers across industry-leading digital, television, print, video, mobile, and social platforms positioned for growth,” said Meredith Corporation Chairman and CEO Stephen M. Lacy. “We are adding the rich content-creation capabilities of some of the media industry’s strongest national brands to a powerful local television business that is generating record earnings, offering advertisers and marketers unparalleled reach to American adults.”

Rich Battista, President and CEO of Time Inc., stated, “I am proud of our accomplishments and thank the talented teams across the Company for their extraordinary work, relentless commitment, and passion. Together, we moved quickly and successfully to launch, grow, and advance our multi-platform offerings during unprecedented times in the media sector. Time Inc. now engages over 230 million consumers across digital and print every month through a portfolio of premium, iconic brands that are well positioned to continue to be powerful voices in media for many years to come.”

USA, New York, NY, Desmoines, IA

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WPP invests in digital content company Fatherly in the US

wppWPP is taking a minority stake in IR Media Ventures Corp. (“Fatherly“), a digital media company producing content for millennial parents in the US.

Fatherly’s advertising and branded-content clients include Johnson & Johnson, Mattel, Inc. and the New York Life Insurance Company. Fatherly is based in New York and employs approximately 40 people. It was founded in 2015. Other investors in the Series A round include BDMI, the investment arm of Bertelsmann, Crosslink, Lerer Hippeau Ventures, SoftTechVC and the United Talent Agency.

Fatherly has worked with over 100 brands to date, developing and distributing native advertising, custom videos and custom branded content. It has created franchise series such as “940 Weekends,” which is a reference to the number of weekends parents have to spend with their children between birth and the age of 18, “My Father The…,” a series of interviews with the sons and daughters of famous men, and its upcoming “Father of the Year” awards.

WPP’s digital revenues were over US$7.5 billion in 2016, representing 39% of the Group’s total revenues of US$19.4 billion. WPP has set a target of 40-45% of revenue to be derived from digital in the next four to five years. Digital represented 41% of WPP’s revenues as of June 30, 2017. In North America, WPP companies (including associates) collectively generate revenues of US$7.5 billion and employ almost 29,000 people.

UK, London & USA, New York, NY

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