July 18, 2016 Last Updated 11:57 am

Adweek changes hands again, acquired by private equity firm Beringer Capital

Toronto and NYC-based PE firm acquires the competitor to Advertising Age, deal includes the network of media and marketing blogs such as FishbowlNY and PRNewser

The private equity firm Beringer Capital has acquired Adweek, along with its associated industry blogs such as FishbowlNY. The acquisition follows last years announcement that Guggenheim Partners would spin-off its media assets, which also included The Hollywood Reporter and Billboard. The sale will likely serve as a cash infusion for the remaining publications.

Adweek-300Adweek was launched in 1978 and competes with Crain’s Advertising Age. It has, gone through hell these past few years.

For some reason, someone had the brilliant idea to bring in Michael Wolff to run the magazine in 2011. Wolff had earlier told Campaign that ad agencies were “run by people who know nothing about advertising.” He lasted less than a year as editor. (Even crazier, he was then picked up by The Guardian, though that gig didn’t last either, and Wolff rewarded that bit of insanity by then writing a revenge piece on the paper for GQ.)

The Adweek group used to include two other titles, Brandweek and Mediaweek, but those were shuttered with the promise that their subjects would be handled by Adweek, a strategy that made no sense since you are talking about different sides of the business.

Beringer is a bit of a boutique PE firm, one that specializes in marketing services – that is good news for those at Adweek. The company is not as active in the M&A market as larger firms, but the one sale of an investment I was able to find came five years after their acquisition – the regular lifetime of a typical private equity acquisition.

Here is the announcement from Beringer Capital of their acquisition of Adweek and its assets:

NEW YORK, NY – July 18, 2016Beringer Capital, a leading private equity firm focused on digital media and marketing services, announced today its acquisition of Adweek, the premier resource for news and insight in media, marketing, and advertising. The acquisition from Mediabistro Holdings also includes the nine industry blogs in the Adweek Blog Network: AgencySpy, FishbowlNY, FishbowlDC, GalleyCat, LostRemote, PRNewser, SocialTimes, TVNewser and TVSpy.

Following this acquisition, Beringer Capital will provide Adweek with the resources to expand its current editorial content, which is delivered online and across a weekly print magazine, mobile applications, daily newsletters, social media, original videos, events, and awards.

James Cooper, the brand’s Editorial Director, will continue overseeing Adweek’s editorial expertise and leadership. “The digital landscape is ever-evolving, and it’ll be exciting to work with a partner who shares our passion for the future of media,” said Cooper.

Adweek’s immense success and position as an industry leader is due to the magnificent work of its team,” said Brian F. Martin, Co-founder of Beringer Capital and newly appointed Chairman of Adweek. “We are committed to providing Adweek with the support they need to exceed the expectations of our readers, clients and partners.”

First published in 1978, Adweek is now one of the largest news sources in the media, marketing and advertising space. Adweek.com sees more than 6.5 million monthly unique visitors and has been ranked within the top three most shared media content sources online. With more than three times the readership of its closest competitor and a social media following of 1.9 million, Adweek is well positioned to capitalize on the digital evolution of the media landscape.

“Over the past four decades, Adweek has continued to evolve along with the industry in which it serves. We are truly excited at the prospect of what the next decade will bring,” stated Perry Miele, Chairman of Beringer Capital.

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