first_imgUnivision terminated its foray into the pureplay digital-media realm with the sale of Gizmodo Media Group and The Onion earlier this month — for a fire-sale price significantly less than $135 million the broadcaster paid for only the former Gawker Media properties two and half years ago.The new owners of the suite of websites are private-equity firm Great Hill Partners and Jim Spanfeller, a longtime media executive, who serves as CEO of the newly formed G/O Media and owns a minority stake in the company.Spanfeller, in an interview with Variety, said he remains very bullish on G/O Media’s ability to build a thriving digital venture. And, he said, there are no plans currently to make significant layoffs at the company, which has just over 400 employees, as it separates from Univision. “We don’t plan to cut our way to growth,” Spanfeller said.That said, Spanfeller said G/O Media will be “looking to run things more efficiently” and improve the company’s cost structure by providing “more direction that has been lacking” — referring to Gizmodo Media Group’s ownership under Univision. Related Twitter Expands Live-Streaming Video Lineup, Sets Content Deals With Viacom, ESPN, Live Nation, Univision, and More YouTube’s ACE Family Signs With Univision Creator Network (EXCLUSIVE) ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15center_img “We are confident we can make this a profitable, fast-growing business,” he said.For now, G/O Media isn’t planning to shut down any of the properties it acquired. Those are Gizmodo, Jalopnik, Jezebel, Deadspin, Lifehacker, Kotaku, Splinter and The Root; and The Onion, which includes its flagship satire publication, entertainment outlet A.V. Club, ClickHole and The Takeout.Worth noting is that according to the Writers Guild of America East, which represents 233 employees at the former Gizmodo Media Group and Onion, its members will continue to work under union-negotiated terms and conditions with Great Hill’s acquisition.In splitting from Univision, G/O Media is planning to move into new New York offices on May 4 — at 1540 Broadway in Times Square, in space sublet from Viacom — and is looking for an office in L.A.Spanfeller declined to comment on reports that the price tag on the Gizmodo Media Group/Onion sale was under $50 million, saying only, “We feel we got a very good deal.”In aggregate, the collection of properties reaches about 100 million unique monthly visitors, although that’s 70 million-80 million backing out third-party sites that are part of the G/O Media group ad network.“The more time we spent with the data the more excited we got,” Spanfeller said. Besides comprising a large audience, it also skews younger to provide better reach among consumers 18-34 than Vice, Vox, BuzzFeed or Group Nine, according to Spanfeller. “Then what was really interesting was how engaged they are with their audience — they’re not dependent on social media.”Spanfeller, former CEO of Forbes.com, most recently built Spanfeller Media Group, whose properties included The Daily Meal and The Active Times; in December 2016, he sold the company to Tribune Publishing Co. (then called Tronc).As part of standing up G/O Media as an independent entity, Spanfeller recently hired a chief technology officer and CFO (as the execs providing those functions for Univision’s Gizmodo Media Group are remaining with the Hispanic broadcaster). Spanfeller said G/O Media is currently looking to hire a chief talent officer to run HR. The company’s new CTO is Jesse Knight, who was CTO/CIO of Vice Media from 2012-17. He started his career at Solid Sender, a development and consulting practice he founded and ran after graduating from McGill University. Filling in the CFO spot is Tom Callahan, who most recently was CFO of BandLab Technologies (where he helped support media operations and manage its investment in Rolling Stone, now owned by Penske Media Corp., the parent company of Variety). He previously worked with Spanfeller at Forbes Media.Given the challenges for digital media players across the spectrum, can G/O Media make a go of it? The company’s websites have been running in the red: Gizmodo Media Group’s properties generated over $80 million in revenue in 2017 but lost $20 million, the Wall Street Journal reported.Spanfeller declined to discuss specifics of the company’s financials. But he insisted G/O Media can become a viable business on its own, without needing to engage in any M&A. “We are open to incremental things we can add to the company,” he said. “But I don’t think it’s a situation where you do bolt-ons or die – you do bolt-ons and then you can be more efficient on the back-office side.”Univision bought the Gawker assets in a bankruptcy auction (which didn’t include Gawker.com), after Gawker Media was sued into bankruptcy by Silicon Valley billionaire Peter Thiel. Univision acquired a 40% stake in The Onion in January 2017 for an undisclosed amount.Separately, Gawker is slated to relaunch this year under Bustle Digital Group, after CEO Bryan Goldberg paid $1.35 million for the media gossip blog. Popular on Variety last_img read more

first_imgKolkata: The Maulana Azad College authorities have decided to postpone the Annual Inter-College Students’ Fest in the wake of unrest between two groups of students. Trouble brewed during organising the event.A clash had broken out in the college on March 7 and four students were injured. The annual event of the college was scheduled to be held on March 22 and 23. The college principal’s office issued a notification in this regard on Saturday night. “The situation in the college has been tense since Thursday and there have been sporadic instances of clashes. This has prompted us to postpone the event,” a senior college official said. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseA source in the college said the clash broke out between two student groups with each one intending to have control of the funds for the two-day event. The situation turned so violent that forces from two police stations —Taltala and New Market — had to intervene to bring situation under control. The practical examination of third-year students was going on at the college at the time of the clash and tension on the college premises created panic among the examinees. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataIt may be mentioned that local MP Sudip Bandopadhyay had attended a programme in the college in the morning and had announced some funds from his MPLAD for construction of the ladies hostel at the college. Soon after Bandyopadhay left, the two groups of students picked up a fight with each other. The Trinamool Chatra Parishad unit in the college however attributed the violence to outsiders who were against organising the annual college event. The event was scheduled to be held after a gap of five years.last_img read more

first_imgPolice search for missing woman Police search for missing woman Punter found hiding in bushes Download our app  – You can download our free app for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store , or get the Android version from Google Play .  Follow StokeonTrentLive on Facebook –   Like our Facebook page to get the latest news in your feed and join in the lively discussions in the comments. Click here to give it a like! Follow us on Twitter –   For breaking news and the latest stories,  click here to follow SOTLive on Twitter . Follow us on Instagram – Featuring pictures past and present from across Stoke-on-Trent, North Staffordshire & South Cheshire – and if you tag us in your posts, we could repost your picture on our page! We also put the latest news in our Instagram Stories.  Click here to follow StokeonTrentLive on Instagram . Punter found hiding in bushes Follow StokeonTrentLive Read MoreTop stories on StokeonTrentLive Dad slams ‘disgusting’ hospital window Driver named following fatal collision Driver named following fatal collision Dad slams ‘disgusting’ hospital window Get the biggest Daily stories by emailSubscribeSee our privacy noticeThank you for subscribingSee our privacy noticeCould not subscribe, try again laterInvalid EmailFlood alerts are in place on rivers across North Staffordshire this morning (Sunday April 28). The Environment Agency have Flood Alerts, issued shortly before 8pm last night, are in place for the River Trent in the Potteries and in Stone, as well as  the River Churnet and River Tean in the Staffordshire Moorlands. The area saw consistent heavy rain throughout Saturday as Storm Hannah hit the region. Highways England are also reporting on the M6 at junction 16 (Crewe/Stoke-on-Trent). A Highways England spokesman said: “Take care when entering the motorway northbound at J16 Barthomley. “Traffic Officers are on scene with a lane closure due to flooding. Maintenance crews on route to assist clearing.” One reader has also contacted us to reporting flooding on Wellfield Road in Bentilee near Farleigh Grove. A total of four flood alerts are currently in force across England – with three of them in Staffordshire and the other in Shropshire. Flood Alerts mean flooding is possible and are the lowest of the three levels issued by the Environment Agency – with no flooding of properties anticipated in the area. The alert for the Trent in the Potteries says:  “Flooding is affecting low-lying land and roads adjacent to the River Trent between Norton Green and Darlaston including Stoke-on-Trent, Lyme Brook between Newcastle under Lyme and Hanford, Fowlea Brook at Stoke-on-Trent and Ford Green Brook.” Read MoreRolling road blocks on M6 and delays as wide load travels through region today   The alert for the Trent near Stone said:  “Flooding may affect low-lying land and roads adjacent to the River Trent between Darlaston and Great Haywood including Stone.” The Flood Alert for the River Churnet and Tean states:  “River levels are rising at the Leek river gauge as a result of persistent heavy rainfall. “Flooding is affecting low-lying land and roads adjacent to the River Churnet between Leek and Rocester and the River Tean between Adderley and Spath including Cecilly Brook at Cheadle.” Flood Alerts and Warnings explainedThe Environment Agency issues three levels of flood alert and warning. Flood Alerts: The most common and least severe, these mean flooding is possible and to be prepared. Flood Warnings: A step up from an alert, a Flood Warning means flooding is expected and immediate action is required. Severe Flood Warnings: The most serious. These mean there is severe flooding and a danger to live. Both Flood Warnings and Severe Flood Warnings are exceptionally rare in Stoke-on-Trent, North Staffordshire and South Cheshire.   Water levels are set to remain high until around 10am on the Trent in the Potteries, 2pm on the Trent in Stone, and 8pm on the Churnet and Tean. The latest Met Office Weather Forecast for the region said further rain was expected, but nowhere near the amount there was on Saturday. The forecast states:  “Sunday will start rather cloudy with the odd spot of rain possible. Skies will brighten during the morning to give sunny spells and isolated showers through the afternoon. Much lighter winds than Saturday and feeling warmer in the sunshine.” A Yellow Weather Warning for wind as a result of Storm Hannah expired at 3pm yesterday. Read MoreTop stories on StokeonTrentLivelast_img read more

first_imgThe Japanese automaker giant, Toyota Motor Corp. will join hands with Uber to work collectively on autonomous autos. Toyota will make an investment of about $500 million and will value Uber at $72 billion to get self-driving cars on the road. Toyota aims to improve security and decrease transportation prices with this initiative. As for Uber, it’s a chance to redeem itself in the budding autonomous transportation sector. As a part of the alliance, Toyota will manufacture Sienna vehicles, which will be equipped with Uber’s self-driving technology, and another company will operate the fleet, said a source familiar with the project. The third partner has yet to be identified. Consumers can expect “mass-production” of self-driving vehicles that would be deployed on Uber’s ride sharing network. Source: BBC.com After Uber withdrew its self-driving cars owing to the autonomous Uber SUV that killed a pedestrian in a fatal crash in Tempe, Arizona, in March, the investment is a ray of hope for the company and its users. With this, Uber consumers’ growing apprehension that Uber is pulling out of the self-driving car space will be finally put to rest. As for the Uber’s investors, this collaboration will come as a relief especially after it was reported earlier this month that Uber was sinking around $1m-$2m into its autonomy work every single day thanks to the fatal crash and the expensive lawsuit that followed. This $500 billion project is expected to be piloted in 2021. The potential of self-driving cars to power car-sharing services represents a major challenge in an industry dominated by individual car ownership. For Toyota, it presents an opportunity to reinvent itself from a car maker to a mobility platform. “This agreement and investment marks an important milestone in our transformation to a mobility company as we help provide a path for safe and secure expansion of mobility services like ride-sharing.”-Shigeki Tomoyama, executive vice president of Toyota Motor Corporation Toyota has been lagging behind in the scene of self driving cars, while Uber’s troubled self-driving car efforts are in desperate need of external help. It would, therefore, be interesting to see how this joint collaboration works in favour of both, Toyota and Uber. For more details on this story, head over to Fortune’s coverage of this news. Read Next Apple self-driving cars are back! VoxelNet may drive the autonomous vehicles MIT’s Duckietown Kickstarter project aims to make learning how to program self-driving cars affordable Tesla is building its own AI hardware for self-driving carslast_img read more

first_imgPhilippe DaumanInvestment in big data, new distribution approaches and content and a focus on events will help Viacom “turn the corner” and deliver “a new period of prosperity and growth” according to Philippe Dauman, president and CEO.Speaking to analysts after reporting less than stellar fourth quarter and full year financials, Dauman cautioned that progress would  “require a focus on the long-term health and vitality” of the business.Dauman highlighted Viacom’s investment in Vantage, its big data engine to deliver targeted advertising, and Viacom Play Plex, the set of branded mobile apps it launched internationally in October, as examples of the kind of innovation that would deliver value. He said that Viacom aimed to triple the number of clients using Vantage ahead of its 2016 upfront.Answering analyst questions, Dauman said that Play Plex would “open up multiplatform revenue in different parts of the world”.Viacom reported that its Nick App had passed the milestone of 20 million downloads across iOS, Android, Xbox and Roku, while its Nick Jr App has passed two million downloads. Overall, Viacom’s digital video views increased by 340% over the year.Dauman said that Viacom could look to subscription video-on-demand rather than traditional distribution to secure growth in China. He said that China was “a potentially significant growth market” but one which was “somewhat limited in the traditional distribution of television”.Dauman said that Viacom would also invest in more short-form “and even longer form content” for new platforms, with the creation of a new mobile video production capability in Los Angeles and New York, “as well as internationally”.Solid growth in domestic and international channel distribution fees failed to offset a poor domestic advertising business, a decline in the performance of the movies business and the impact of a strong dollar for Viacom in its fourth financial quarter, with revenues dropping 5% to US$3.79 billion (€3.52 billion).Excluding a negative 3% impact of foreign exchange movements, the channels business grew by 5% to US$2.79 billion, with international advertising performing better than the domestic ad business. The film business’s revenues dropped 24% in the quarter to US$1.025 billion, and was down23% for the full year, thanks to the strong performance last year of Transformers: Age of Extinction.Revenue for the full year amounted to US$13.268 billion, down 4%, and adjusted operating income fell by 5% to US$3.92 billion.Dauman said Viacom’s predominantly youth-focused brands had been hit early by the wave of disruption in the audiovisual media business, but that there signs of progress were emerging. Citing research that showed millennials were spending more time consuming media than sleeping, Dauman quipped that “apparently, media executives aren’t the only ones losing sleep in this modern world”.last_img read more