Univision bids on Gawker
© Getty Images

Univision has entered the race to acquire Gawker amid the controversial internet publisher’s ongoing bankruptcy auction, according to a new report.

Univision’s move challenges a $90 million bid already made by media company Ziff Davis, LLC, Reuters reported Tuesday.


Reuters said its sources asked not to be identified as the bankruptcy auction over Gawker remains in progress.

It said bids for Gawker, which also includes popular women’s website Jezebel, sports site Deadspin and car website Jalopnik, were due Monday.

Ziff Davis can also raise its initial bid at the auction, Reuters continued, which is scheduled to take place privately at the offices of Gawker’s bankruptcy attorneys Tuesday.

A winning bid will then be selected, it added, as will a backup bid. A U.S. judge will have to approve the proposed winning bid in bankruptcy court on Thursday.

Reuters said Univision’s bid is the latest push by the Spanish-language broadcaster to expand its digital media footprint.

Univision earlier this year acquired a minority stake in The Onion, the popular satirical website.

Ziff Davis, Reuters added, produces consumer technology websites including AskMen, Computer Shopper and Geek.com.

Gawker’s founder and managing editor filed for bankruptcy earlier this month after a prolonged legal battle with former professional wrestler Hulk Hogan.

Nick Denton’s decision to declare bankruptcy provides protection from Hogan, whose legal name is Terry Bollea, and other debt collectors.

Gawker filed for bankruptcy protection in June before putting itself up for sale after it was ordered to pay Hogan $140 million in damages.

Hogan sued Denton and Gawker four years ago after the gossip site published an excerpt from a private sex tape featuring the athlete.

Billionaire Peter Thiel, a major conservative donor, revealed in May that he was bankrolling Hogan’s fight against Gawker.

Valleywag, a now-defunct blog in the Gawker network, was the first outlet to publicly discuss Thiel’s sexuality in a 2007 post tilted, “Peter Thiel is totally gay, people.”

“It’s less about revenge and more about specific deterrence,” Thiel said of helping Hogan during a May 25 interview with The New York Times.

“I saw Gawker pioneer a unique and incredibly damaging way of getting attention by bullying people even when there was no connection with the public interest."