Rolling Stone magazine has a new owner.
Penske Media Corporation — which also publishes Variety, Women’s Wear Daily, Hollywood Life, Deadline and others — has acquired a 51 percent interest in Rolling Stone from Wenner Media, whose president, Jann Wenner, started Rolling Stone 50 years ago in San Francisco.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but reports have Rolling Stone valued at about $100 million. Though Singapore-based BandLab holds the other 49 percent share of Rolling Stone, Wenner Media will retain editorial oversight, with Jann Wenner as editorial director and his son, Gus Wenner, as president and COO.
In a statement, Gus Wenner said that, “We have such a unique and special product in Rolling Stone, and we are excited to build on its strong foundation and invest in its future through this partnership.”
Penske CEO Jay Penske added that, “Our interest in Rolling Stone is driven by its people, its cultural significance, and the globally recognized brand that has no peer in its areas of influence. We believe that Penske Media is uniquely qualified to partner with the Wenners to ensure the brand continues to ascend for decades across multiple media platforms — we’re eager to get started.”
Rolling Stone will remain headquartered in New York.
Gary Graff is an award-winning music journalist who not only covers music but has written books on Bob Seger, Neil Young and Bruce Springsteen.