BuzzFeed Goes Public. Now what about Vox Media, Group Nine and Vice?


“For us, it’s a matter of ambition and opportunity, and we’re ambitious,” said Jim Bankoff, CEO of Vox Media. “We will consider our options, but we will do so from a strong position.” He wouldn’t comment on financial details or potential deals.

Group Nine has been in talks with major publishers, including Vox Media, about a possible merger on its own. SPAC listHowever, according to three people with knowledge of the matter, none has happened so far. Ben Lerer, head of Group Nine, said in an interview that the company is in an “enviable position” given its recent sales growth.

SPAC obviously allows us to be even more ambitious.”

One option for Group Nine is Discovery Inc., one of its biggest backers. There may be an agreement with media giant lately orchestrated daring Take over In an effort by WarnerMedia to compete better on streaming. Group Nine’s properties have helped attract hundreds of thousands of new customers to streaming Discovery platform making it an attractive takeover target through content partnerships.

The digital advertising market has grown during the pandemic as people start spending more online; BuzzFeed, Vox Media, and Group Nine benefited from this. Yet its earnings were nothing compared to the amounts brought in by the digital giants.

“The breadcrumbs of Facebook, Google and Amazon are the pie of Vox, Group Nine and Buzzfeed,” said Brian Wieser, principal analyst at GroupM, the media investment arm of advertising firm WPP.

This disparity underscores the need for ad-focused publishers to continue to grow.

BuzzFeed’s entry into public markets will likely give it an edge. In addition to cash, HuffPost will be able to use stock as currency to make another deal in line with its acquisition.

“We will have opportunities for more acquisitions and there are more exciting companies we want to follow,” Jonah Peretti, BuzzFeed co-founder and CEO, said in a statement last month.

When asked if BuzzFeed would consider getting into the subscription business, he said in a recent interview: “Sure, we do. Why not?”


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