Los Angeles Business Journal

Buzzmedia Buys Spin Magazine

By Howard Fine Tuesday, July 10, 2012

L.A. blog network Buzzmedia has made its biggest push yet into the music world, acquiring the prominent yet struggling Spin Magazine.

Buzzmedia announced Tuesday morning that it had purchased Spin Media LLC McEvoy Group for an undisclosed sum. Besides the iconic print magazine, Buzzmedia also picked up Spin’s iPad application and events business.

Buzzmedia Chief Executive Tyler Goldman said the company will expand Spin’s digital distribution.

“Buzzmedia seems to be aggregating everything it can in online music media,” said Henry Eshelman, managing director of Platform Media Group, a Los Angeles boutique PR firm.

Two months ago, Buzzmedia bought electronic music site XLR8R, adding to its already extensive list of music offerings, including Pure Volume, AbsolutePunk and Pop Matters.

Now, with Spin, Buzzmedia, “has a marquis title in its portfolio,” Eshelman said.

Spin was founded in 1985 by Bob Guccione Jr., son of the Penthouse publisher. It soon became one of the leading music industry magazines behind Rolling Stone. Guccione sold the magazine to Miller Publishing in 1997 for $42 million.

But the magazine soon began to decline as the music publishing industry moved online; most recent owner McEvoy Group acquired the magazine for just $5 million in 2006. Since then, McEvoy has tried to boost Spin’s digital presence, adding an iPad app last year. Yet the decline in ad revenues continued and this year, McEvoy reduced Spin’s print publication from 11 times a year to just six.