Penske Media Corporation Invests $100 Million in Vox for 20% Stake

Vox publishes New York Magazine, Thrillist and other digital titles

jim bankoff vox
Vox Media CEO Jim Bankoff at Vox Media's 2022 Code Conference in Beverly Hills, California. (Jerod Harris/Getty Images for Vox Media)

Penske Media Corporation will pay $100 million for a 20 percent ownership stake in Vox Media, publisher of Vox, New York Magazine, Thrillist, Popsugar, SB Nation and other titles, making PMC its largest shareholder, according to media reports.

The companies announced the investment in a joint news release but did not provide details of the terms. The New York Times cited multiple sources for the details of the investment, which represents a significant reduction in the value of Vox compared to its last capital raise.

Its last funding round was in 2015 when NBCUniversal invested $200 million at a valuation of $1 billion.

As a result of the investment, Penske Media will be the largest shareholder of the company, according to the Times.

PMC, whose holdings include Rolling Stone, Variety, The Hollywood Reporter and others, did not disclose financial terms. Vox and PMC said the two entities would operate independently, though PMC CEO Jay Penske will join the board of Vox Media.

“We couldn’t ask for a better partner than Jay and Penske Media to invest in our company’s future success, and help us build on and accelerate the leading creative and business strength across our organization,” Vox Media CEO Jim Bankoff said in a statement. “In addition, this investment by Penske Media will allow Vox Media to continue scaling its existing brands and operations, while providing resources for future acquisitions, and is another step forward in the ongoing ascent of Vox Media.”

PMC announced late last year that it had acquired Dick Clark Productions, owner of the Golden Globes and other television events.

Since its 2021 merger with Group Nine Media, Vox now include Polygon, Recode, Curbed, The Verge and Vulture, among others. Vox said late last year that it was laying off 7% of its workforce, or about 130 jobs.

“We deeply respect the track record of both [Bankman] and the senior leadership team at Vox, and the company’s remarkable growth over the last decade,” Penske said in a statement. “The Penske Media and Vox Media alliance will further cement both companies as leaders in modern media and take advantage of new opportunities at scale.”