Immediate Media Co, the special interest content & platform company, and owner of 220 Triathlon mag and the Triathlon Show, has announced the acquisition of Future Publishing’s sport and craft titles. Future’s shareholders were notified about the £24 million deal this morning, which is set to complete during the summer, subject to shareholder approval.
Future’s market-leading sport titles reach over 4.7 million unique users a month, and will join Immediate’s fast-growing digital network. With a strong focus on cycling, the sport portfolio includes BikeRadar.com, ‘the world’s largest cycling reviews website’, alongside Cyclingnews.com, ‘the world’s number one source for pro cycling news and race reports’.
According to a source at Immediate Media, while the TriRadar.com site has been acquired, Triathlon Plus magazine is not part of this deal. This leaves the status of Triathlon Plus mag uncertain at this stage – as following the sale of its other sport titles, Future will now focus on its technology and photography titles.
Future’s sport and craft print portfolio has a monthly circulation of more than 100,000, with market leading Cycling Plus delivering 14 years of continuous circulation growth, alongside other leading titles Procycling and the market leader for off road cyclists, Mountain Biking UK.
The craft sector has also shown impressive growth in print in the past few years, and Future’s portfolio of craft titles will join Immediate’s own portfolio of titles in this specialist area.
Immediate CEO Tom Bureau said “We are delighted to have reached this agreement with Future. Immediate’s strategy is to create the leading special interest content and platform company, and these brands fit with our vision. We are developing our business around leading content brands, highly-engaged specialist communities, and multi-platform commercial models.
“Backed by Exponent Private Equity, we have a track record of investing in our brands, around content and platforms, and we are excited to be welcoming the new teams to our company.”
Future CEO Zillah Byng-Maddick added “These titles are well managed and very successful parts of Future’s portfolio and will continue to thrive under their new owners. Their disposal will enable Future to focus on our remaining lead verticals with an emphasis on the growing consumer technology market. I’m pleased that as we say goodbye to colleagues, I’m confident they are moving to an excellent home at Immediate.”
Immediate Media, formed on 1st November 2011 by the merger of BBC Magazines and digital platform company Magicalia, has become established as one of the leading magazine media companies in the UK over the past two years. With a portfolio of market leading brands, Immediate’s vision is to create a multi-platform content company with sustainable growth.
Immediate’s rapidly evolving digital and transactional business is allied to its print business. In the most recent Audit Bureau of Circulation (ABC) figures Immediate was ‘the best performing of all major magazine media companies’. The biggest brand in the portfolio is Radio Times, which the company has driven to record levels of profitability with rapid growth in digital users and revenue.
Future plc is an international media group and leading digital business, listed on the London Stock Exchange (symbol: FUTR). Future holds market-leading positions in the technology and photography sectors and attracts more than 58 million monthly global unique users to websites including techradar.com and musicradar.com.
Future has been named Consumer Digital Publisher of the Year for three years in a row by the Association of Online Publishers (2011, 2012, 2013) and has been named the Professional Publishers Association Digital Publisher of the Year for two consecutive years (2012, 2013).