New Sports Illustrated Publisher to Lay Off More Than 40 Employees (Report)

Wall Street Journal says layoffs are coming to famed publication

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Less than four months after Sports Illustrated was purchased by Authentic Brands, the magazine’s new publisher is planning to lay off more than 40 employees, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.

According to the Journal, TheMaven, which licensed the right to publish Sports Illustrated from Authentic in June, plans to eliminate the positions as part of a widespread overall. The Journal also reports that following the layoffs of company employees, TheMaven intends to hire up to 200 contractors to cover sports.

The news comes one day after it was announced that Sports Illustrated editor-in-chief, Chris Stone, was stepping down after 7 years. According to Deadspin, Stone is “considering an offer from TheMaven for a more global, less SIfocused position within the company.”

Authentic Brands purchased Sports Illustrated for $110 million in May, saying at the time that former owners Meredith would continue to publish SI for at least the next two years. Less than a month later the company announced it had licensed publishing rights to TheMaven, the digital media company whose CEO, Ross Levinsohn, is best known for his tenure as publisher of the Los Angeles Times, marked by significant conflicts with newsroom staff.

Authentic Brands and TheMaven did not immediately respond to requests for comment from TheWrap.