Kelsey Media, the specialist interest publisher that owns Running Fitness magazine, has made two key acquisitions in the endurance sport media space – snapping up Triathlon Plus mag from Future plc and the Outdoor Fitness title from Bauer Media.
The deal puts an end to the uncertainty surrounding the future of Triathlon Plus. The UK triathlon magazine was not part of an agreement between Future and Immediate Media that was announced in May this year.
Immediate Media Co, the owner of 220 Triathlon mag and the Triathlon Show, acquired Future’s sport and craft titles in a £24 million deal, which is set to complete during the summer, subject to shareholder approval. While the TriRadar.com site was acquired by Immediate Media, Triathlon Plus magazine was not.
It is worth noting that, under Future’s previous stewardship, the online vehicle for Triathlon Plus magazine was the TriRadar.com site. As this domain is now owned by Immediate Media (220 Triathlon mag), the new owners of Triathlon Plus will have to get to work quickly on a new web platform!
New home for Triathlon Plus
On Friday 25 July 2014, it was confirmed that Future plc had exchanged contracts to sell a ‘Portfolio’ comprising its Auto titles and Triathlon Plus to Kelsey for a total initial consideration of £2.1 million. This comprises £1.8 million in cash and £0.3 million of magazine subscription deferred revenue to be retained by Future.
In addition, deferred consideration of up to £0.8 million is payable by 30 September 2015 based on revenue performance. Completion is scheduled to occur by the end of August 2014. The net proceeds of sale will be used to reduce Future Group’s external borrowings.
The Portfolio of titles sold by Future to Kelsey includes: Fast Car, Fast Ford, Classic Ford, Classics Monthly, Total Vauxhall, Mini Magazine, Triathlon Plus, Classic Ford Show, Ford Fair, Japfest, Japfest 2: The Evolution, Performance Vauxhall Show, TRAX: The Ultimate Performance Car Event and associated websites.
Zillah Byng-Maddick, Future’s Chief Executive, said “The sale of this portfolio to Kelsey Publishing is another step in our strategy to focus the business on our core vertical markets.”
In the year ended 30 September 2013 the Portfolio generated revenue of £5.0 million and pre-tax profit (post allocation of central group and corporate costs at Future) of £0.3 million. The gross assets of the Portfolio as at 31 March 2014 were approximately £0.3 million.
Also on Friday 25 July, Kelsey Media confirmed that it had acquired the brand Outdoor Fitness from Bauer Media. Outdoor Fitness is a 132-page monthly publication, launched in the summer of 2011. ‘It aims to deliver some of the best cycling, running, swimming, triathlon and adventure content, enjoyed by a readership who are loyal to staying fit and healthy in the great outdoors.’
The editorial staff have transferred and will be based in Kelsey’s Peterborough office. The Editor is Jonathan Manning, the Deputy Editor Marc Abbott and the Art Editor is Mark Tucker. Lauren George will manage the ad sales operation in conjunction with her existing title, Running Fitness, based out of Kelsey’s Cudham office.
A release from Kelsey stated, ‘We feel this is an exciting opportunity to expand our presence into the health, fitness and wellbeing arena; Outdoor Fitness complements existing brands within Kelsey: obviously Running Fitness but also Psychologies and Coast.’