Authentic Brands Guts Sports Illustrated

by The Editors on October 4, 2019

It was only a matter of time before old media sports titan Sports Illustrated felt the bite of digital publishing, and that time was yesterday according to a story in The New York Post.

Zombie brand collector Jamie Salter’s Authentic Brands Group, which purchased the venerable Sports Illustrated brand in May 2019, ended up cutting 40 of the magazine’s 150 staff members on Thursday October 3, 2019 through their contract publisher Maven.

As news of the impending cuts circulated, about three-quarters of the staff signed a petition calling on SI’s new owner, Authentic Brands, to rescind its 10-year licensing deal with digital publisher The Maven, headed by Jim Heckman. . . “The Maven wants to replace top journalists in the industry with a network of Maven freelancers and bloggers, while reducing or eliminating departments that have ensured that the stories we publish and produce meet the highest standards,” read the petition, which was first reported by NPR.

Why is this interesting to us? Well, Mr. Salter was involved with Kemper Snowboards, co-founded Ride Snowboards and, in addition to Sports Illustrated, currently owns Airwalk, Vision Street Wear, and most of Volcom. And if things keep going in this direction he will eventually own everything. Yes, he’s seems to have a knack for reanimating profits from dead brands.

[Link: The New York Post]

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