BuzzFeed is acquiring HuffPost from Verizon
Benjamin Mullin and Keach Hagey, in The Wall St. Journal:
BuzzFeed Inc. has agreed to acquire Verizon Media’s HuffPost in a stock deal, the companies said Thursday, uniting two of the larger players in digital media as companies across the sector search for ways to jump-start growth.
The acquisition is part of a larger deal between BuzzFeed and Verizon Media, a unit of Verizon Communications Inc. Under the pact, the companies will syndicate content on each other’s platforms and look to jointly explore advertising opportunities. Verizon Media will get a minority stake in BuzzFeed as a result of the tie-up, the companies said.
Verizon Media is also making an undisclosed cash investment in BuzzFeed in addition to the stock deal for HuffPost, according to a person familiar with the matter.
Jonah Peretti, BuzzFeed’s founder and chief executive, will run the combined company. BuzzFeed will lead the search for a new editor in chief of HuffPost.
That’s quite an arrangement — I’d even forgotten HuffPost was acquired by Verizon (when it bought AOL) in the first place.
I don’t much understand the point of having two media properties with ideologically overlapping audiences (though I’m sure they know how much overlap there actually is demographically). Maybe the idea is to share infrastructure and build a backend and ad business that stands up to the Google/Facebook online advertising duopoly?