Multiplatform Publisher Sales and Acquisitions Include Major Publishers

Multiplatform publisher Forbes settles takeover; CBS eyes Scout Media; IDG sold to Chinese investors

We begin with a look at Forbes, which has been involved in a legal battle with Honk Kong media group IWM since 2015. Financial Times is reporting. “…both IWM and Forbes say the dispute has now been settled, following an agreement last month. One person with knowledge of the case told the Financial Times there were concerns that an even more protracted courtroom stand-off would inflict damage to both parties and the magazine.”

“The terms of the settlement were not disclosed. But one person familiar with the negotiations said IWM had agreed to pay all of the outstanding amount and late payment interest related with the completion of the deal. IMW has also released all of the funds it had put in the escrow account. Forbes will retain a 5 per cent stake in the business as originally agreed at the time of the sale.”


On the topic of sales, let’s take a look at IDG, which has been sold to Chinese investors for under $1 billion. Folio has the story. “China Oceanwide and IDG Capital announced yesterday a definitive agreement to acquire the entire IDG package. The Wall Street Journal reports that China Oceanwide will pay under $1 billion — less than a quarter of the $4 billion in revenues estimated by IDG insiders in early 2016.”

The article continues with more on the deal. “The deal, which has received clearance from the Committee on Foreign Investment, will split the company into two parts. The committee is a inter-agency federal entity that reviews the national security implications of foreign investments in U.S. companies.”

“China Oceanwide will become the controlling shareholder of IDG’s operating businesses, which includes its subsidiaries — the International Data Corporation (IDC) and IDG Communications, the branch which runs several media brands, including PC World and Computerworld.”

Lastly, we’re looking at a possible acquisition of bankrupt Scout Media by CBS. The New York Post is reporting, “Scout Media, the digital sports media site in Chapter 11, said it has secured a $9.5 million “stalking horse” bid from CBS to take over its assets.”

The article continues with a look at the history of the Scout’s financial dealings. “It filed for bankruptcy court protection last month after three creditors — LSC Communications (claiming unpaid bills of $671,651), iMatch Services ($81,613) and On Safari Foods ($29,116) — sought to force an involuntary filing.”

“Multiplier Capital, a first-lien debtholder that helped finance the initial 2013 buyout from Fox Sports, is owed $10.9 million. It has agreed to provide $6.2 million to keep the company going through an auction.”

It seems that this process for Scout Media may soon be over. “Scout’s president, Craig Amazeen, is optimistic. We continue to move through this process and will have new ownership in place by early February that supports the business, our publishers, customers, employees and other important stakeholders,” Amazeen said.

We will be sure to share any news that comes out of these acquisitions in the future.


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