NZME reaches agreement to purchase business news website BusinessDesk for up to $ 5 million
Simon Maude / Tips
NZME has entered into an agreement to purchase BusinessDesk.
New Zealand Herald publisher NZME has reached deal to buy business news website Business office for a contract worth up to $ 5 million.
Under the conditional agreement, NZME will provide $ 3.5 million in cash for Business office. At the end of the sale Business office the content publisher will receive an additional amount of up to $ 1.5 million if the goals are met by December 2023.
Business office launched as a business newswire service in 2008. Last year, it launched a paid subscription news service, which has more than 10,000 digital subscribers.
The transaction is expected to be finalized in the first part of next year. The Business office the brand will continue as a subscription offer.
* NZME pushes pause on return of capital to shareholders because of Delta
* The detail: why New Zealand needs a media freedom committee
The sale is conditional on:
- No material adverse change occurs;
- Transfer of staff and subcontractors to operate the business
- Shareholder approval of content
- Satisfactory engagement with the Trade Commission in the context of the transaction
In a statement to NZX on Tuesday morning, NZME chief executive Michael Boggs said that all Business office staff would be offered roles with NZME, resulting in 35 expected business journalists across the Business office and the newsrooms of the New Zealand Herald.
Business office Editor and CEO Pattrick Smellie said Covid-19 created challenges, but it also revealed a strong appetite for business news.
Investment by business commentator, Business office contributor and co-founder of Milford Asset Management Brian Gaynor, authorized Business office to switch to a paywall model.
In a Tuesday column, Smellie said that since launching 14 years ago, it has grown from a team of five full-time reporters to more than 20 people, almost all in writing.
Business office journalists Gaynor, Smellie, Paul McBeth and Matthew Martel are directors of Content and majority shareholders.
Other Business office journalists hold minor stakes in the company.