Meredith Corporation is an American media conglomerate based in Des Moines, Iowa. The company owns magazines, television stations, websites, and radio stations. Meredith’s publications have a readership of more than 120 million, paid circulation of more than 40 million, and its websites have nearly 135 million monthly unique visitors. Meredith’s broadcast television stations reach 11% of U.S. households.
Edwin Thomas Meredith founded the company in 1902 when he started publishing Successful Farming magazine. In 1922, Meredith began publishing Fruit, Garden and Home magazine, a home and family service publication. In 1924, the magazine was retitled Better Homes and Gardens, and the first issue cost a dime on the newsstand. In 1930, the company published the first edition of The Better Homes and Gardens Cook Book. In 1946, the company became a public company. It was listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1965.
On January 31, 2018, the company completed the acquisition of Time Inc. In March 2018, only six weeks after the closure of the deal, Meredith announced that it would lay off 200 employees, up to 1,000 more over the next 10 months, and explore the sale of Fortune, Money, Sports Illustrated, and Time. Meredith felt that, despite their “strong consumer reach,” these brands did not align with its core lifestyle properties. Howard Milstein had announced on February 7, 2018, that he would acquire Golf Magazine from Meredith and Time Inc. UK was sold to the British private equity group Epiris (later rebranded to TI Media) in late February. In September 2018, Meredith announced the sale of Time to Marc Benioff and his wife Lynne for $190 million. In November 2018, Meredith announced the sale of Fortune to Thai businessman Chatchaval Jiaravanon, whose family owns Charoen Pokphand, for $150 million. After failing to find a buyer for Money, Meredith in April 2019 announced that it would cease the magazine’s print publication as of July 2019, but would invest in the brand’s digital component Money.com. In May 2019, Meredith announced the sale of Sports Illustrated to Authentic Brands Group, for $110 million.
Time Inc. Productions were renamed Four M Studios in May 2018. The studios are under Bruce Gersh, Meredith’s president of People, Entertainment Weekly and People en Español and head of Four M Studios. In October 2019, Meredith Corporation sold the Money brand and website to Ad Practitioners LLC, a media and advertising company based in Puerto Rico. Terms were not disclosed, but sources said the brand went for just over $20 million, which was more than the $10 million Meredith was seeking in early 2019.
In November 2019 the company unloaded one more asset acquired in the Time Inc. acquisition, its 60% equity ownership of digital advertising company Viant Technology Holding Inc. that, among other assets, owns social networking site Myspace. Also in November 2019, the company announced the launch of a new quarterly magazine, called Reveal, in January 2020 in collaboration with Drew and Jonathan Scott from HGTV’s Property Brothers.