Gawker Media submitted for bankruptcy defense in a New york city court on Friday, a relocation that might pave the waylead the way for the struggling digital property to be obtained by Ziff Davis.
The owner of buildings consisting of IGN and AskMen has reportedly currently bid in the community of $100 million for Gawker, which lost a $140 million jury decision in the Hulk Hogan trial that has since been supported. The business announced a purchase agreement shortly after the Chapter 11 filing went public but an auction is anticipated to be open to other bidders.
Denton, who is expected to submit for individual bankruptcy as well, issued a statement hailing a potential marriage with Ziff Davis. We have been required by this lawsuits to give up our longstanding independence, however our authors continue to be dedicated to telling the real stories that underpin reliability with our millions of readers, he said. With stronger backing and disentangled from lawsuits, they can perform their essential work on more platforms and in different types.
We anticipate the possibility of including these excellent brands and the skilled individuals who support them to the Ziff Davis household, wrote Ziff Davis CEO Vivek Shah in a memo dispersed to his business.
Declare bankruptcy defense was largely expected when Gawker lost its previous quote to appeal that decision. Investment bank Houlihan Loukey had already been helping Gawker founder and CEO Nick Denton explore his alternatives for the digital publisher, which is also backed by Columbus Nova Innovation Partners.
Putting up the company for auction might help finance Gawkers legal expenses; Hogan had the benefit of backing from Silicon Valley mogul Peter Thiel, who has actually assisted finance his legal effort, as was revealed last month. The company will continue to operate even while in Chapter 11.
In addition, Gawker submitted a bankruptcy suit versus Hogan and other parties that have actually sued the business to defend the business from having to pay should they lose in any of those legal procedures.
Ziff Davis joins a list of other companies rumored to be kicking the tires on Gawker, consisting of Univision and Vox. Variety moms and dad business Penske Media Corporation has also been reported as a prospective acquirer, however a spokesperson for the business rejected that any such negotiations were ever held.
Traffic for Gawker Media, which includes brand names ranging from Deadspin to Gizmodo, hit a 29-month low in April, with the flagship Gawker brand name sinking to its smallest audience in three years.
Tellingly, the Gawker.com brand name was not pointed out by Shah as one of the buildings he valued, which opens the possibility that the website might be shuttered if Ziff Davis completed the acquisition.