Germany-based media house, Axel Springer has announced to acquire a majority (88%) stake in New York-based Business Insider. Springer already holds approximately 9% stake in the company and, after this purchase, will hold a stake of 97%.
According to press note, the purchase price based on 100% of Business Insider amounts to $442 Mn (currently approximately EUR 395 Mn) on the basis of a cash and debt free valuation of $390 Mn (currently approximately EUR 348 Mn). The valuation corresponds to an amount of $343 Mn (currently approximately EUR 306 Mn) for the 88 percent of the shares that Axel Springer is acquiring.
According to Crunchbase, since its its launch in 2007, Business Insider has raised over $55.6M in 7 rounds of funding. Bezos Expeditions, the personal investment company of Jeff Bezos holds 3% share in the company which he will continue to hold.
Started Henry Blodget, Kevin Ryan and Dwight Merriman, the publication targets 18 to 34-year-olds. Apart from news and exclusive reports, it also offers a subscription-based research reports branded as BI Intelligence.
Business Insider reaches over 78 Mn unique visitors each month. Once through, this deal will take Springer’s total reader base to 200 Mn. The acquisition also puts Axel in the list of ‘six largest publishing houses’ in the world.
Post the acquisition, Henry Blodget, founder, CEO and Editor-in-Chief and Julie Hansen, COO and President at Business Insider will continue in their respective roles. There will be additional appointment on board of the company, which will now include Kenneth Lerer, managing partner at Lerer Hippeau Ventures, an early-stage technology venture capital firm, co-Founder of Huffington Post and Chairman of Buzzfeed, will receive a seat on the Board of Business Insider.
Axel Springer will finance this acquisition using existing credit lines. The transaction is subject to approval by relevant antitrust authorities.
Mathias Döpfner, CEO of Axel Springer SE, stated, “With the acquisition of Business Insider, we continue with our strategy to expand Axel Springer’s digital reach and, as previously announced, invest in digital journalism companies in English-speaking regions of the world. Business Insider has set new standards in digital business journalism globally.”
Axel Springer SE is divided into three operating segments: Paid Models, Marketing Models and Classified Ad Models. It has nearly 15,000 employees.
It is also an investor in other media firms like OZY.com, an online magazine for news and culture, Livingly Media a women’s portal, Lerer Hippeau Ventures and SV Angel.
Axel Springer also has a majority holding in the shopping platform, Retale; a virtual-reality startup, Jaunt; the social-video-news media company, NowThis Media and the media startup, A Plus.
Earlier this year, Vox Media, one of the fastest growing online publishers, had acquired an independent technology-related news, reviews, and analysis website, Re/Code; Singapore-based E27, had raised $650K; Tech In Asia had raised $4 Mn from SB ISAT Fund, Eduardo Saverin, co-founder of Facebook, Walden International, Marvelstone, m&s Partners, Andrew James Solimine, co-founder of Nitrous and others and Buzzfeed had $200 Mn in a new funding round led by NBCUniversal
Another digital content company, Gigaom was shut down in March this year. Later in May, Knowingly Corp, an Austin-based internet startup had acquired a portion of the assets of Gigaom and relaunched it in August.
In context of India, News Corp acquired VC Circle, YourStory grabbed under $5 Mn funding from Kalaari and others.
Let’s have a look into fundings of media platforms: