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“I have vivid memories of growing HuffPost into a major news outlet in its early years, but BuzzFeed is making this acquisition because we believe in the future of HuffPost and the potential it has to continue to define the media landscape for years to come,” Peretti said in the statement.
The Wall Street Journal previously reported on the deal.
The two websites will remain independent of each other, and BuzzFeed has begun a search for a new editor-in-chief of HuffPost.
With a healthier balance sheet and more diverse revenue streams, New York-based BuzzFeed is looking to make more acquisitions, either in media or in commerce, according to a person familiar with the matter.
Verizon’s minority stake values BuzzFeed at about US$1.7 billion, or roughly the same as it was in 2016, when Comcast Corp.’s NBCUniversal invested US$200 million in the company, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the information isn’t public.
BuzzFeed, famous for its lighthearted quizzes and lists, has been trying to diversify into new lines of business, including cookware, after relying heavily on making specialized ads for brands.
The company has clawed its way back to profitability this year after the pandemic led to the cancellation of lucrative ad deals, forcing a round of layoffs and pay cuts. Earlier this month, Peretti told staff that BuzzFeed was back on solid financial footing and would restore payments to employees who took salary cuts in April.