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HubSpot, a publicly-traded sales and marketing software company, is acquiring The Hustle, an email newsletter and content company targeted at entrepreneurs and small business owners, sources tell Axios. The deal is expected to close next week.

Why it matters: Hubspot has long invested in using content to help educate its existing and potential customers about business trends, primarily through its web blog. The deal will help it double down on that effort. The Hustle's daily business newsletter has more than 1.5 million subscribers.

  • The deal could also help HubSpot generate leads to acquire more customers without having to pay for lots of ads on Google and Facebook.

Details: The deal is valued at roughly $27 million, a source familiar with the terms tells Axios.

  • The Hustle makes most of its money from advertising and a small portion from subscriptions to its premium research arm called Trends. Its events business was sizable, but has been impacted by the pandemic.
  • The company has raised a little over $1 million in funding from seed rounds. Sources say the company is profitable.
  • All of the company's roughly 30 full-time employees are expect to remain.

When contacted for comment, HubSpot noted that it already has a large community of people who go to HubSpot's blog to get information around business trends and ways to grow and scale companies.

The big picture: Niche media is becoming a powerful customer acquisition tool and retention tool.

  • For example, Penn National, a casino operator, invested $163 million in Barstool Sports for a 36% equity stake. Its ownership presumably will help it lure sports bettors.

What's next: Paperwork has been delivered to shareholders for their approval, with closing expected next week.

Go deeper

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
54 mins ago - Economy & Business

Peloton's wild ride and possible buyers

Illustration: Megan Robinson/Axios

Peloton is having a bumpy ride, and has become a source of fascination among even those who've never invested or clipped in.

Driving the news: On Monday, a hedge fund with less than a 5% stake in Peloton called for CEO John Foley to be fired and for the connected fitness company to consider seeking a strategic buyer. Shares gained nearly 10% on the news, but remained down 16.2% for the year and off 80% their December 2020 peak.

Scoop: Republicans probe NBC over Beijing Olympics coverage

Photo: Oscar del Pozo/AFP via Getty Images

Republican leaders on the House Energy and Commerce Committee have sent a letter to NBC Universal executives voicing concerns about "the extent of influence the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) may have over NBCUniversal’s coverage of the games."

Why it matters: The human rights abuses committed by the CCP have been the subject of intense scrutiny ahead of this year's Winter Games in Beijing. Activists last year sent a letter to NBC executives urging the network to cancel plans to cover the Olympics.

Scoop: Trump's new social network quietly courting influencers

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Former President Trump’s elusive new social media network Truth Social — which plans to go public — is reaching out to internet influencers asking them to “reserve their spots” for when it launches in February or March.

Why it matters: The outreach doesn’t mention Trump’s name or affiliation. Some influencers suggest that could be a ploy to enlist their support without realizing the affiliation.