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Group Nine Acquiring Popsugar, Adding Scale and a New Demographic

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Has the industry entered a wave of online publisher consolidation? Last week, Vice Media announced it had acquired Refinery 29, bringing the male-dominated site a new audience of women. This week, Group Nine announced it will acquire Popsugar, which will help it grow reach for advertisers and tap into a new, largely female audience.

News 1Group Nine is better known for its brands, which include animal site The Dodo, new site NowThis, travel and entertainment site Thrillist, and science site Seeker. Less than a month ago it announced it had taken $50 million in new funding. It said it would acquire new intellectual property for its brands, perhaps with this deal in mind. Popsugar is known for its lifestyle and beauty content for women. It also offers branded retail products and holds a festival called Popsugar Play/Ground.

Group Nine isn't divulging the value of this deal, but the New York Times reported it was an all-stock transaction. Once the two companies combine they'll reach over 50% of the U.S. population and over 70% of millennials (those age 18 to 34), the company says.

"Popsugar hugely expands our reach within an important demographic, bringing us a community that deeply loves the Popsugar brand and a company with the proven ability to diversify their revenue across premium advertising, affiliate, direct-to-consumer commerce, licensing, and experiential channels," says Ben Lerer, CEO of Group Nine.  

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