BuzzFeed set to acquire HuffPost

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BuzzFeed, Inc. will purchase the news site HuffPost from Verizon Media as part of a stock deal, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

A person familiar with the deal told the newspaper that Verizon Media will invest an undisclosed amount of cash into BuzzFeed as part of a larger agreement in which Verizon Media will own a minority stake in BuzzFeed and the two companies will collaborate on advertising and content opportunities.

Jonah Peretti, BuzzFeed’s current CEO, will lead both outlets. However, HuffPost’s day-to-day operations will not change, and the site will remain a “separate news organization” from BuzzFeed News, BuzzFeed’s Editor-in-Chief Mark Schoofs told employees.

A new editor-in-chief for HuffPost will be hired with guidance from BuzzFeed, according to the Journal, and will report to Schoofs, he added to employees Thursday.

“For several years, I spent my every waking moment on HuffPost and how to grow it and how to turn it into a leading media brand on the internet,” Peretti, who co-founded HuffPost in 2005, told the Journal in an interview.

“So I have a deep connection to that brand because of the history. But this is not about nostalgia for me, it’s about the future, the brand and the audience.”

The news comes after BuzzFeed announced in May that it was furloughing several dozen staffers to avert large-scale losses amid the coronavirus pandemic. In July, The Wrap reported that nearly 70 percent of furloughed employees had been laid off, according to a company spokesperson. 

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