The Advocate this year celebrates its 50th anniversary. Out magazine marks 25 years. I’m so proud to say that.
When in 2008 Here Media bought these venerable LGBT publications, it became our mission to secure their longevity. At the time, that looked like a major challenge. Things sure have changed! This year our award-winning coverage marks its eighth consecutive year of profitability thanks to an extraordinary team.
Now more than ever, the world needs these publications. We as an LGBT community will always need media that amplifies our diverse voices. Out magazine raises up the examples of LGBT luminaries, instilling in us who are different that vital feeling of belonging. The Advocate was born in 1967 from the Black Cat protest in Los Angeles as a way for a nascent movement to keep informed. Looking around now, these missions seem especially relevant.
With that need in mind, I’m announcing our next, bold chapter.
Today we announce a new ownership group is taking over Here Publishing and reforming as Pride Media Inc. Together with new partners at Oreva Capital, management takes over today as owner of our prized publications: The Advocate, Out, Out Traveler, Plus magazine, and PRIDE.
ComScore rates us as number 1 in our space, and millions of people every month read these leading brands serving LGBT people. Even so, we can do more. We must do more. And in this new structure, we will do more. Our message of love, inclusion, and social justice will soon reach more people by orders of magnitude.
With the smart investment structure co-ordinated by Adam Levin and Oreva Capital and its partners, I’m thrilled to say that this isn’t just a simple purchase of assets. This is a catalyst moment where management takes an ownership position and the amazing souls that carried the torch for so long will be in a stronger position to ensure Pride Media’s longevity. More, this acquisition lays a foundation for you, our subscribers and true community members to play a deeper role. More on that later.
As part of the transition, Lucas Grindley will step in as the new President, and oversee day to day operations of the company. Lucas was hand selected by myself to be the Managing Director, and I am thrilled to see him lead the company going forward, and will be there to help in any and every way. I expect you will hear from him directly very soon.
These days aren’t like those of 50 years ago. Our sales team was heroic in its early efforts to persuade the world’s most respected brands to advertise with an LGBT publication (and to include LGBT people in those ads). Now our clients include every company from Tiffany to Target. So it follows that the likes of Vice and other mega-media companies all want a piece of our profitable pie. Truly authentic voices such as ours ought to be loudest, and Oreva will mount an expansion of video and deeper coverage in lifestyle categories such as food and travel, while extending our reach internationally.
Some of the most fulfilling work of my life has been during the last nine years. I’m thankful to our team, to our readers, to our advertisers, and to all those who have come before. This year we created a new editorial video team, launched a branded content studio, and while other media outlets have contracted, we have added 14 people in 2017 alone. More to come.