Variety up for sale

Parent company Reed Business Information had been unloading many of its other titles, but clung to the venerable entertainment daily. No more. Reed is focusing on its data services. From The Wrap:

The oldest of the Hollywood trades, has been struggling with declining advertising and circulation for at least five years. Once the dominant source of information for Hollywood, it has been challenged by digital upstarts like TheWrap and the Deadline blog. It has also faced greater competition from long-time rival The Hollywood Reporter, which relaunched its website and folded its daily print editions, launching a glossy weekly in its stead.

Reed introduced a paywall in early 2010, which no doubt resulted in a loss of readers to free sites like The Wrap, The Hollywood Reporter, and Nikki Finke's Deadline. No word on an asking price or potential buyers. You always have the aforementioned rivals, but I'm not sure why they would be interested at this point. And it's hard to see any other established media property choosing to delve into a market that's over-saturated as it is. Perhaps some rich guy (or guys) who would like an entree into Hollywood? Or perhaps they'll be forced to just close the place down, though that would be unlikely. Branding alone would seem to be worth something.

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
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