Dotdash becomes the largest US publisher with the acquisition of Meredith

IAC’s Dotdash kicked off December by completing its acquisition of Meredith, making it the first digital and print publisher in the United States. Meredith owns many well-known brands, including PEOPLE, Better Homes & Gardens, Allrecipes, InStyle, and REAL SIMPLE. The combined company will remain based in New York and led by Dotdash CEO Neil Vogel. Dotdash Meredith will be presented as a separate business division under the IAC umbrella.

“Today marks the start of a great new opportunity at IAC – crafted by the ambitious minds of Neil Vogel and the Dotdash team and made possible in collaboration with our talented new colleagues at Meredith – to define a new future in the ‘edition,” Joey Levin said. , CEO of IAC. “Dotdash Meredith has a bright future ahead of her.”

In addition to Meredith’s brands, Dotdash has its own rich portfolio including Verywell, Investopedia, The Balance, The Spruce, Simply Recipes, Serious Eats, Byrdie, Brides, Liquor.com, Treehugger, MyDomaine, Lifewire, Tripsavvy and ThoughtCo.

Together, Dotdash and Meredith represent more than 40 well-known brands that reach 188 million consumers per month, according to comScore data from October 2021. Ninety-five percent of the audience are women. Meredith brings her advertising capabilities, first-party data and advertiser relationships to the dance, while Dotdash offers digital expertise in e-commerce and performance marketing. The company expects more than 70% of pro forma 2021 Adjusted EBITDA to come from digital, with Digital Asset Adjusted EBITDA expected to exceed $450 million in 2023.

“Dotdash Meredith’s future has begun,” Vogel said. “No other media company in the world combines this kind of heritage with the scale, speed and power of a digital-first enterprise. Dotdash Meredith will deliver intent-driven media on a scale never seen before. .

In October, Meredith CEO Tom Harty told employees they made the deal because IAC was offering a premium price and company management believed the companies would be a good fit for each other. the other.

“Dotdash has underscored its commitment to Des Moines, where our roots have been strong since our founding and where we will have a continued presence,” Harty said in October.

At the time, Vogel said one of the benefits of the relationship is that Meredith was so much bigger than Dotdash, and the company of five could learn a lot from Meredith.

“They have been there longer than us. And a lot of the things they’ve done with the data go far beyond what we’ve done,” Vogel said.

Meredith also sold her broadcast division to Gray TV. The deal, which was originally for $2.7 billion, was increased to $2.825 billion. Shareholders will receive $16.99 per share once the transaction closes.

“We are extremely proud of our 120 years of journalistic integrity and dedication to creating world-class brands and consumer experiences,” said Harty. “We are focused on closing both transactions and creating value for shareholders. Looking ahead, we are excited to further strengthen our brands and consumer relationships as part of Gray and Dotdash Meredith.

Insider grip

It’s the end of an era. It’s almost hard to believe that, just a few years after buying Time Inc. and choosing to focus on print and digital magazines, Meredith is so willing to walk away. There are synergies between the two companies, sure, but it still doesn’t seem like the perfect match. It seems we don’t hear the whole story here. We’ll keep you posted if any new details emerge.