Tyra Banks recently made history, again, by appearing on the cover of Sports Illustrated.
In 1997, she became the first African American woman to shoot a solo cover for the magazine. Now, 22 years later, at 45, she’s the oldest woman ever to shoot a solo cover.
While all this is grand, it’s not the biggest news to come out of Sports Illustrated this week.
The brand and intellectual property of Sports Illustrated has been sold to marketing company Authentic Brands Group for $110 million (around R1,6 billion), reports CNN.
Meredith Corporation (MDP), the current owner of the iconic magazine, announced the sale on Tuesday. In an unusual arrangement, Meredith will continue to publish the Sports Illustrated magazine and website.
The structure of the deal suggests that the Sports Illustrated brand is much more valuable than the storied magazine.
So, everyone having a minor panic about the Swimsuit edition can calm down. It isn’t going anywhere.
Authentic Brands Group, which owns the brands of celebrities like Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley, will assume the marketing, business development and licensing of Sports Illustrated’s intellectual property.
Jamie Salter, CEO of Authentic Brands Group, said in a statement that Sports Illustrated’s “trusted name and fiercely devoted following set the stage for the brand to become a leader in lifestyle and entertainment.”
Potential future business opportunities for the brand include events, conferences, gambling and gaming products. There is also talk of video and television.
Meredith, which is paying Authentic Brands Group an undisclosed fee to publish the Sports Illustrated magazine and website, said it would maintain the publication’s editorial independence.
Sports Illustrated was put up for sale last year along with Time, Fortune and Money magazines, which Meredith acquired via its purchase of Time Inc. Meredith also owns People, InStyle and Better Homes & Gardens.
Look out for Tyra in this year’s Swimsuit edition.
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