3. Exclusive: Bustle rebrands ahead of planned IPO
Bustle Digital Group is formally rebranding to BDG, its founder and CEO Bryan Goldberg tells Axios. The new logo and name will roll out Tuesday.
Why it matters: "As much as Bustle was our first and still largest property, we want to recognize all of the other great brands that are already on platform and that will be joining platform," Goldberg says.
- BDG is still planning to go public via a SPAC (special purpose acquisition company) later this year, Goldberg confirmed.
- It's been reported that BDG is aiming for an IPO of at least $600 million, including debt. The company doesn't dispute that figure.
Details: Bustle was founded by Goldberg in 2013 as an online women's magazine. The company has since expanded into several different verticals across 9 sites, including tech and fashion.
- BDG currently has around 500 employees, and expects to add another 100 this year.
- Later this year, Goldberg says the company is finally planning to relaunch the storied Gawker brand, which it purchased in 2018.
From a business perspective, "the company is incredibly healthy right now," Goldberg says, noting that BDG is profitable. This year, the company will bring in over $100 million of revenue.
Be smart: Unlike many digital media companies scrambling to diversify revenues away from being solely reliant on advertising, Goldberg says Bustle plans to double down on ads, and bring more ad-tech in-house.
- "We view digital advertising as being a business that's worth $1 billion for us before the end of this decade," he says.
- Goldberg notes that once the company is public, he can foresee BDG one day buying ad tech companies to support its business.
What's next: "We're hoping to add several more brands in the coming year," Goldberg says. In the future, he envisions having 20-30 brands on the platform.
What to watch: As the SPAC world cools, some media companies may be putting off their plans to go public, CNBC's Alex Sherman reports. But Vice Media is likely not one of them, per The Wall Street Journal's Ben Mullin.