October 7, 2015 Last Updated 12:22 pm

NTVB Media, owner of TV Weekly, acquires TV Guide from OpenGate Capital

Founded in 1953, TV Guide was for many years published by Triangle Publications, the owner of The Inquirer and Daily News (Philadelphia)

The venerable TV Guide has been sold to the owner of TV Weekly, NTVB Media, Inc. The first issue of TV Guide was published in 1953, and featured Lucille Ball of I Love Lucy on the cover.

For many years TV Guide was published by Philadelphia publisher Triangle Publications, then the owner of The Inquirer and the Daily News.

These days the print magazine is owned by the private equity firm OpenGate Capital, with the digital properties controlled by the CBS Interactive. It is the print side being sold.

The media investment firm DeSilva + Phillips represented the seller in the sale.

Here is the announcement of the sale:

NEW YORK, NY – October 7, 2015 — NTVB Media, Inc., owner of TV Weekly and leading cable and satellite publications, announced today that it has acquired TVGM Holdings L.L.C., owner of TV Guide Magazine and TVInsider.com, from OpenGate Capital, creating the nation’s largest group of consumer television publications.

“TV Guide Magazine has played an important role in television entertainment and pop culture for more than 60 years and is the perfect complement to our suite of media brands,” said NTVB President and CEO Andy DeAngelis. “Now more than ever viewers need a trusted guide to the vast array of available programming. By adding TVGM to our existing roster of TV-centric publications, we will be able to do more than anyone else to help them cut through the clutter and find the programming they want and value.”

TVG42_NCIS-600The acquisition creates the country’s largest group of print publications for television watchers, with TV Guide Magazine’s 1.8 million subscribers and NTVB’s 1 million. Both groups also have a growing digital presence.

TV Guide Magazine is the No. 1 television magazine, the No. 2 entertainment/lifestyle magazine, and the 15th largest magazine in the U.S. Its iconic logo is recognized around the world. TV Insider is the fastest growing website in the entertainment category, powered by organic growth.

NTVB’s flagship TV Weekly magazine is a region-specific television guide that is marketed in partnership with more than 160 leading U.S. newspapers. NTVB also publishes Channel Guide Magazine, Hopper Magazine and VIEW! magazine in partnership with some of the largest cable and satellite companies in the nation.

The powerful combination of NTVB and TVGM will offer the largest, most efficient way to reach active television viewers. Together they will reach more than 20 million consumers when they are making their viewing decisions.

“Acquiring TVGM allows NTVB Media to offer advertisers a highly effective way to reach all segments of the TV viewing audience,” DeAngelis said. “Together, the properties will be extremely effective in helping programmers gain audience.”

TVGM CEO David J. Fishman and CFO Joe Clemente will remain with the company. “OpenGate and the great team at TVGM led by David and Joe have successfully right-sized TV Guide Magazine, driving profitability and positioning the company for success in the digital age,” DeAngelis said.

“We are thrilled to join the NTVB family,” Fishman said. “We think about the market the same way and we share the same DNA. Putting these companies together means we’ll be able to do more to help TV viewers discover what’s worth watching, which has always been TVGM’s core mission.”

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

“TV Guide Magazine has built strong levels of trust with consumers and the entertainment industry,” DeAngelis said. “In publishing, the winners will be those who are trusted – whether in print or online. TVGM has made a successful transition to the new age of television. It has been profitable every year since 2009, and now combined with NTVB is poised for strong growth. We believe that bringing the brand back into a publishing company focused on entertainment will help it flourish.”

By joining forces, the two companies encompass powerful digital capabilities that will help them speed development and content creation, and enhance digital marketing. In addition, both companies have strong editorial and creative staffs dedicated to developing new and unique offerings.

TV Guide Magazine and TVInsider.com will maintain offices in New York, Los Angeles and Newtown Square, Pa.

The media investment bank DeSilva + Phillips represented TVGM Holdings in the transaction.

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