Condé Nast acquires Chicago-based Pitchfork Media
The New York Times is reporting that Condé Nast has acquired the influential Chicago-based Pitchfork Media.
Condé Nast nor Pitchfork have issued public statements at this time. (See below for Condé Nast announcement.)
“Pitchfork is incredibly fortunate to have found in Condé Nast a team of people who share our commitment to editorial excellence,” said Schreiber. “Their belief in what we do, combined with their additional expertise and resources, will allow us to extend our coverage of the artists and stories that shape the music landscape on every platform.”
In addition to its independent music website, Pitchfork Media has two music festivals (one in Chicago and a winter festival in Paris) and a quarterly magazine, which will continue publishing under the new ownership.
Update: Condé Nast issue an announcement about the acquisition later in the day, here it is:
NEW YORK, NY — October 13, 2015 —– Bob Sauerberg, Condé Nast president and CEO, today announced the acquisition of Pitchfork Media, Inc., the most trusted voice in music. The deal adds the popular music vertical to Condé Nast’s premium digital network.
“Pitchfork is a distinguished digital property that brings a strong editorial voice, an enthusiastic and young audience, a growing video platform and a thriving events business,” said Sauerberg. “We look forward to bringing Pitchfork to the network of best-in-class brands of Condé Nast.”
“Pitchfork is incredibly fortunate to have found in Condé Nast a team of people who share our commitment to editorial excellence,” said Ryan Schreiber, founder and CEO of Pitchfork. “Their belief in what we do, combined with their additional expertise and resources, will allow us to extend our coverage of the artists and stories that shape the music landscape on every platform. We’re honored to become part of their family.”
The acquisition effort was led by Fred Santarpia, chief digital officer of Condé Nast, to whom the Pitchfork team will report.
“Music content is one of the most prolific genres of content on the web,” said Santarpia. “The acquisition of Pitchfork reflects Condé Nast’s continued belief in the power of authentic editorial voices to engage influential audiences at scale.”
Founded in 1996, Pitchfork has become the first source for music fans seeking the best in independent and emerging music across all genres. Pitchfork is widely acclaimed for its in-depth music writing and criticism, innovative design, original music video content, thoughtfully programmed live events and the annual Pitchfork Music Festivals in Chicago and Paris. In 2013, Pitchfork launched The Pitchfork Review quarterly print publication. The company’s monthly audience has grown to over six million unique visitors and their social following has also increased to well over four million followers and fans. Pitchfork has also been recognized with numerous awards for their content and design, including multiple Webbys, an ASME, and, most recently, an SPD for Brand of the Year.
In the past five years alone, Condé Nast has increased its digital audience from 17.2 million to over 84 million unique monthly visitors. This gives the company a ranking of 22nd in comScore’s top 100 properties. Among affluent millennials, Condé Nast has ranked first in comScore’s Lifestyle Category for 22 consecutive months, and across social media, the company has built a following of over 111 million consumers.