May 23, 2018

Cox closing college sports vertical citing business challenges

Cox Media Group, the digital media arm of Cox Communications, is closing "Diehards," its college sports vertical, citing "extremely challenging" business dynamics.

Why it matters: The news comes as many in the digital media landscape are struggling to survive algorithm changes and a weak digital advertising outlook. Earlier this year, Axios reported that Cox would be shutting "Rare," its Facebook-driven conservative site.

The details: Diehards, which is made up of Dawg Nation (about the Georgia Bulldogs,) SEC Country (about SEC sports) and Land of 10 (about the Big 10 conference,) launched in September 2017 as a hub for college sports news and information. SEC Country and Land of 10 will fully shut down. "Dawg Nation" will remain operational, with Cox hoping to re-align it into CMG Atlanta.

What they're saying: "The digital landscape and business dynamics around Diehards continue to be extremely challenging and the short, high-traffic seasonality of this sports vertical creates a difficult environment in which to build a consistent and sustainable revenue model," Cox Media Group (CMG) President Kim Guthrie writes in an email to employees.

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