LOS ANGELES – September 23, 2020 – Leading independent media and entertainment companies Penske Media Corporation (PMC) and MRC announced today a deal to create two joint ventures in publishing and content, with both companies holding significant ownership. The announcement, effective today with a transition period through the end of 2020, was made by PMC CEO Jay Penske and MRC CEOs Asif Satchu and Modi Wiczyk.
The first joint venture establishes PMRC which includes some of the most iconic brands in entertainment and music. These distinguished brands include PMC’s Rolling Stone, Variety and Music Business Worldwide interests along with MRC’s The Hollywood Reporter, Billboard and Vibe. Together, these brands offer clients opportunities to reach an influential audience at scale through editorial, advertising and other marketing solutions. PMRC’s day-to-day operations will be led by PMC, a digital media pioneer and platform innovator whose ever-growing constellation of iconic brands include Deadline, WWD, SHE Media, Sportico and Robb Report, among many others.
“These are all brands I’ve long admired. Billboard, The Hollywood Reporter, and VIBE have created some of the finest content in their respective industries and have contributed immensely to the heightened quality of journalism covering entertainment and music today,” said Penske. “We feel very fortunate for this valuable partnership with the exceptional MRC team and the opportunity to continue the legacy of these tremendous brands for the next many decades.”
“We have a great deal of respect for Variety, Rolling Stone and Music Business Worldwide and, as importantly, the leadership at PMC who we’ve gotten to know well and look forward to partnering with in both these businesses,” said Satchu and Wiczyk.
The second joint venture includes a new content partnership that will activate the power of the production infrastructure and expertise of MRC across PMRC intellectual property (IP). Notably, the joint venture includes two significant global music brands at a time where interest in music-based content has exploded. MRC will be tasked with developing the collective brand IP across all of its content divisions including Television, Film, Live & Alternative and Non-Fiction. MRC has a proven track record with a roster of award-winning and high profile titles that reach hundreds of millions of unique viewers a year including: Emmy-nominated Ozark, The Great, The Outsider, Golden Globe Awards, Fyre Fraud; best-in-class live event music series, including Billboard Music Awards and American Music Awards, and Academy Award- and Golden Globe-nominated Knives Out and other movies, like Ted and Baby Driver. The long-form content alliance will be managed by MRC.
- PMRC has become home to the publishing operations and legendary brands: Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Rolling Stone, Billboard, Vibe and Music Business Worldwide.
- The content joint venture compliments MRC’s expertise in producing award-winning, high-profile titles across film, television, non-fiction and live events.
- The Hollywood Reporter, Billboard and Vibe going forward will leverage the Penske Media infrastructure and be placed on the PMC tech and delivery platforms.
- MRC will collaborate with the PMRC brands to create new opportunities for industry and consumers surrounding its powerful portfolio of live event and awards shows.
- There are no leadership changes at PMC or MRC as a result of these ventures, and both PMC and MRC will continue to operate independently.
- The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
PMC is a leading independent global media and information services company whose award-winning content attracts a passionate monthly audience of more than 310 million. Since 2004, Penske Media has been a pioneer in digital media and a platform innovator, reaching viewers on all screens across its ever-growing constellation of iconic brands, which includes Deadline, Variety, Rolling Stone, WWD, SHE Media, Robb Report, Sportico, BGR, ARTnews, Art in America, Fairchild Media, and Spy.com, among many others. PMC’s journalists and content creators deliver daily the most comprehensive news and information in their industries and areas of coverage, unequaled in ambition, depth and courage. Headquartered in New York and Los Angeles with additional offices in 14 countries worldwide, PMC believes companies should not only be profitable but also forces for good. To learn more about PMC, our 2% Foundation, and our portfolio of brands, please visit www.PMC.com.
MRC is a diversified global entertainment company with divisions including Film, Television, Live & Alternative, Non-Fiction, and Data. Leading independent studios MRC Film and MRC Television source, finance, develop and produce critically-acclaimed and award-winning films and shows alongside some of the industry’s foremost creative artists. MRC Non-Fiction finances and produces feature documentaries and docuseries for global audiences, and dick clark productions, part of MRC Live & Alternative, is the largest producer and proprietor of television live-event entertainment programming broadcasts worldwide. MRC Data was established recently with the acquisition of Nielsen Music’s data and insights product suite and includes the definitive industry Billboard Charts. MRC recently teamed with PMC to form PMRC with two distinct joint ventures in publishing and content that combine The Hollywood Reporter, Variety, Billboard, Rolling Stone, Vibe and Music Business Worldwide. MRC owns a majority stake in A-Major Media and has minority investments in A24, Fulwell 73, Sugar23 and T-Street.