Time Inc. Moves To Sell Majority Stake in ‘Essence’

Time Inc. is currently trying to sell their majority stake of the longstanding monthly black women’s lifestyle magazine Essence. According to the Wall Street Journal, this business move is a major one by the publisher and the first big one since earlier this year when Time Inc. decided they would not sell the whole company.

“We want to unlock the value here,” Rich Battista, CEO of Time Inc. exclusively shared with WSJ. “We think the best way to do that is to bring in a strategic partner with investment capital. We’re keeping an interest because we see real upside.”

If all goes well, the company hopes that the business deal will be signed and sealed by the year’s end.

As previously stated, Time Inc. made the decision earlier this year – late April to be exact – to opt out of selling the company. It was a surprising decision, considering the decline in circulation and print advertising rates the magazine has seen over the past year or so. To combat that, Time Inc. has cultivated and created new streams of potential growth, including obtaining more digital content.

WSJ also reports that Time Inc. will instead focus on “core assets and core areas of growth” like their print publications InStyle, People, and Time and will eliminate the things that don’t work, their “noncore assets.”

But despite the motion to sell a majority stake of Essence, Battista is adamant about the fact that he sees Essence as one of those “core assets and core areas of growth” despite the decline the magazine has seen. The positives with Essence are its increasing digital presence and its ever-expanding events business. So there is hope for the longstanding publication yet.

The biggest objective right now is to lock down a new investor, who will hopefully be able to facilitate Essence in their growth even more in the years to come.

Photo Credit: PR Photos

Sheriden Chanel is a twenty-something writer, Beyoncé enthusiast, and lover of all things visual art. Keep up with her and her musings on social via @indiebyline.