American Media Inc., the owner of several celebrity and fitness magazines, has reached its second deal in recent months with Wenner Media LLC to purchase Men’s Journal.
Launched in 1992 by New York-based Wenner Media, Men’s Journal is a lifestyle and fitness magazine geared towards men. The seller’s only remaining magazine title now includes Rolling Stone, a music news and celebrity-focused publication. Financial terms of the current deal were not disclosed.
The deal for Men’s Journal is the latest move by the seller as the company copes from the legal fallout from the now-retracted 'A Rape on Campus' article, a story published in 2014 by Rolling Stone which resulted in a defamation verdict in court. The verdict concluded that Rolling Stone, parent company Wenner Media, and the ‘A Rape on Campus’ reporter were liable on multiple libel claims after a two-week trial. The decision on what damages to award have not been announced, however one plaintiff was suing for $7.5 million.
American Media, based in New York, owns numerous print and digital media publications that cover celebrity and lifestyle news. The buyer’s portfolio of media brands includes: National Enquirer, Star, OK!, Us Weekly, Globe, National Examiner, Soap Opera Digest, Men's Fitness, Muscle & Fitness, Flex and Muscle, and Fitness Hers. American Media also manages 11 different digital websites that include OKmagazine.com and RadarOnline.com.
Media M&A is striking hot and expected to heat up event more, as technology disrupting traditional distribution and consumption habits grab the interest of investors. The middle market has seen its fair share of magazine deals as well, including: Multimedia Platforms Inc.'s purchase of Next Magazine; Southern Cross Group's acquisition of Grupo Expansion, one of Mexico's largest magazine publishers, from Time Inc. (NYSE: TIME); and Time Warner Inc.'s move to spin off its magazine business in 2013.