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Rolling Stone magazine gets new owner after 50 years

Rolling Stone magazine gets new owner after 50 years

The investment cost Penske over $100 million, Variety reported.

"We have such a unique and special product in Rolling Stone, and we are excited to build on its strong foundation and invest in its future through this partnership", Gus Wenner told Variety. The stretch for him will be running an iconic brand: While Penske owns some consumer-facing properties, like Robb Report and BGR, this is by far the best-known title he will have owned.

"I am so proud of our accomplishments over the past 50 years and know Penske Media is the ideal match for us to thrive in today's media landscape", said Jann Wenner, editorial director of Wenner Media.

Rolling Stone serialized Thompson's "Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas" as well as works by author Tom Wolfe, and featured cover photographer to rising photographer Annie Leibovitz in its heyday.

Wenner Media Chief Operating Officer Gus Wenner will become a part of Penske's advisory board, in addition to keeping his current role.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed but according to the Financial Times the agreement values the publication at approximately $110m (£82m) and marks the end of Wenner Media's control of Rolling Stone.




It is the biggest investment in a single title that PMC has made, and rivals the amount paid for Fairchild Publications and its titles that include Women's Wear Daily.

As previously reported, Wenner Media, facing the same challenges as most traditional magazine owners in the digital age, previous year sold a 49% stake in the title to Singapore-based company BandLab Technologies.

But it was never clear that Azoff and Dolan, who have no publishing experience, wanted to actually own and operate Rolling Stone magazine.

In any case, it's no longer Jann Wenner's problem.

Wenner expanded his company by broadening into ownership of Us Weekly and Men's Journal, and then took on debt when he repurchased Us from Disney. In Sticky Fingers, Hagan writes that Wenner Media was at one point valued at around $1 billion dollars by Wenner's accountants and was being courted for an acquisition by Hearst at that valuation.