Motorsport Network buys Autosport

06/10/2016
NEWS STORY

Media group Motorsport Network has bought Autosport as it tightens its grip on F1.

In the last couple of years the group, owned by the mysterious Miami-based Russian billionaire Mike Zoi, has quietly built an impressive stable of companies including news websites, merchandise companies and even model making companies (Amalgam), despite the fact that much of the industry is notorious for its failure to make money.

Along the way, as it expanded globally, the group recruited some of the biggest hitters as writers and contributors… all clearly under the watching eye of Bernie Ecclestone and long before talk of Liberty Media first emerged.

Only last week it was revealed that Zak Brown, marketing guru and a non-executive chairman with Motorsport.com, revealed that he had quit his role as CEO at CSM Sport & Entertainment as he sought to take new role in F1. Indeed, many believe he is being lined up to run the marketing side of the sport following the departure of Ecclestone.

Today the Motorsport Network took another huge step towards domination of the sport as it announced its acquisition of six business operations that comprise Haymarket Media Group's interests in motorsport publishing, photography and events.

The acquired businesses in the portfolio include Autosport.com, Autosport Magazine and F1 Racing, Motorsport News, LAT Photographic, Autosport International and the Autosport Awards.

"This milestone in acquiring the businesses that Haymarket has grown over decades will be recognised by everyone in the industry as a mark of our intent," said Brown. "All that is best about Autosport and its sister businesses will be preserved.

"Supported with investment and aligned with our dynamic organisational culture and high-speed growth that is attracting younger demographics to motorsport, the fusion of these two organisations presents tantalising opportunities for our staff and our clients alike.

"This acquisition is part of a broader consolidation strategy and is aligned with a series of significant changes we're witnessing across the motorsport landscape."

While Pitpass understands that a number of journos have already been targeted to move to Motorsport Network, the fact that one of Motorsport.com's main rivals has now been bought out is almost certain to lead to job losses.

While America might only have one race, what with Liberty Media's ownership of the sport and Motorsport Network's increasing influence it is clear that certain aspects of Formula One have shifted from Europe across the Atlantic.

Check out our Thursday gallery from Suzuka, here.

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Published: 06/10/2016
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