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BuzzFeed goes public with confetti, a quiz, and a staff walkout
BuzzFeed has always been an odd beast. A low-effort article farm on one hand, a thoroughly effective and impressive news outfit on the other. They’ve always sat awkwardly together under the same branding – and despite founder Jonah Peretti’s historic claims to the contrary I always wondered how long the BuzzFeed News brand would exist alongside the rest of the business.
Now, as BuzzFeed goes public (with disappointing first-day results) it seems his enthusiasm to fund news for its own sake has cooled. He’s reported to have said he’s less keen to take a loss on news than in the past, and most of the wider company’s latest activities have either downplayed or been at its expense.
More, as CJR reports, investors aren’t necessarily too jazzed about the newly-public BuzzFeed’s prospects more generally: “Numerous observers were uncharitable in their assessment of the stock’s performance: Bloomberg called it ‘a sign investors are wary’ of BuzzFeed; CNBC’s Alex Sherman tweeted that “’BuzzFeed‘s first couple hours of trading is emblematic of the digital media industry’s last ten years, or even last year. Things were looking up. Now they’re not.‘”
Billion dollar valuations and ambitious projections shaped M&A in 2021. But will the hype last?
For an industry frequently cited as struggling, the sale figures of some of this year’s headline media acquisitions have painted quite a different picture. But some of the acquired companies have a grim fate in store. Esther Kezia Thorpe takes a look at the key M&A trends of the year as part of our Media Moments 2021 report.
Publishers embrace buy now, pay later technology to streamline commerce
Speaking of our Media Moments 2021 report, one of the key areas we explored was the speed with which the media businesses who had their ecommerce tech in place came to dominate. Now Adweek has published an interesting look at how some publishers are betting upon BNPL options in order to sustain that growth.
First look: inside the New York Times’ audio app
Sara Fischer has the first look at New York Times Audio, which is set to debut as an iPhone app in a private beta. Something of note is that the NYT is far from the only IP on the app – publishers participating in the beta via Audm (a subscription narrated article company The Times acquired in 2020) include New York Magazine, Rolling Stone, Mother Jones, Foreign Policy and Atavist.
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