Nearly twelve years after Time Inc. initially seized control of Essence Communications Partners, the company is looking to sell its majority stake in the company by the end of this year, the Wall Street Journal reports.
While Essence has been considered one of Time's thriving brands, Rich Battista, the company's chief executive, cited Essence's "events business" and growing digital presence as a reason to seek a new investor. "A new investor might have the resources to enable Essence to expand its growing events business at a time when many publications are seeking new revenue opportunities," Battista told WSJ. The most recent Essence Festival reportedly attracted more than 470,000 attendees, which earned more than the magazine made all year, according to WSJ.
And with the decline of print advertising, Time is focusing more on its "core brands." "The media company said at the time it intended to focus on its core brands, among them People, InStyle and Real Simple, and TIME. Time Inc. also said it would look to outright sell some of its noncore assets," journalist, Jeffrey A. Trachtenberg reported.
As Essence makes this entrepreneurial transition once again, the conversation about returning the company back to black ownership will likely be revived. Battista reportedly said that he hopes the transaction will go through by the end of 2017. So it will be interesting to see what direction Essence goes in next.