IAC’s Dotdash readies for cookieless future with $2.7 billion acquisition of Meredith

IAC’s Dotdash readies for cookieless future with $2.7 billion acquisition of Meredith

IAC CEO Joey Levin stated Dotdash Meredith will be capable of “supply uniquely engaged audiences to advertisers and companions—primarily based not on a reliance on non-public data or private historical past however on relevancy to the content material they’re consuming and a deep understanding of their wants.”

  • Dotdash pays $42.18 per share for Meredith’s Nationwide Media Group, which incorporates the whole lot of Meredith’s digital and print journal operations. (It was beforehand introduced that Grey Tv would purchase Meredith’s native media enterprise for $2.8 billion.)
  • Meredith’s titles embody Higher Houses and Gardens, Leisure Weekly, InStyle, and Individuals and might be added to Dotdash’s portfolio of digital publishing manufacturers, together with The Stability, Byrdie, Investopedia, Critical Eats, and Verywell.
  • An IAC spokesperson wouldn’t affirm or deny if layoffs had been to be anticipated because of the acquisition.
  • Dotdash Meredith expects its adjusted EBITDA from its mixed digital belongings to surpass $450 million in 2023.


Why it might succeed: Levin’s feedback counsel the brand new firm is well-positioned to reach the wake of third-party cookie deprecation, and Dotdash’s prior publishing technique bears this out.

  • Whereas Dotdash doesn’t have the identical identify recognition as BuzzFeed or Vox Media, its profitability has outperformed a lot of the market.
  • Most Dotdash visitors is from individuals utilizing serps for solutions to particular questions, and thus, it’s much less more likely to be impeded by future privateness legal guidelines that would impression different main advert gamers.
  • With this acquisition, it’s clear that technique stays the identical. Dotdash rebranded from About.com in 2017 after discovering that vertical-focused websites carry out higher in natural search than “all issues to all individuals” websites.
  • Whereas Meredith is traditionally referred to as a print publishing firm, Dotdash could also be extra occupied with its digital properties, which go deep particularly subject material areas. Meredith’s digital promoting revenues surpassed print revenues for the primary time in 2021.


Sidenote: In keeping with Digiday analysis, publishers are much less frightened concerning the impending cookie modifications than companies or manufacturers, and offers like these appear to help that relative ease.


How we bought right here: Dotdash mum or dad firm IAC has been refocusing its acquisition technique lately, and Meredith has gone by its personal turbulent instances.

  • IAC spun off Match Group (Tinder and Hinge’s mum or dad firm) in 2020 and Vimeo this 12 months, slanting its portfolio towards content material reasonably than tech.
  • Meredith acquired a few of its best-known publications in 2018 with its buy of Time Inc. for $1.8 billion—it quickly offered off Fortune, Time journal, and Sports activities Illustrated, focusing extra on female-oriented publications.


Dive into the numbers:

  • Dotdash properties presently attain 100 million customers on a month-to-month foundation, in line with the corporate. After the transaction closes, the corporate ought to attain 175 million customers month-to-month and 95% of US girls, in line with inner numbers.
  • In keeping with analyst estimates, previous to the acquisition, Dotdash had a worth of roughly $1.9 billion, eclipsing that of BuzzFeed.

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