PlanetOut Sells Magazine and Book Publishing Biz

In a $6 million cash deal, PlanetOut Inc. agreed to sell its magazine and book publishing business — including Out and The Advocate — to Regent Releasing, owner of Here! network, today.

According to San Francisco Business Times, “A formal agreement should be done by April 30 and the deal should close by August 31.”


  1. Matt says

    As long as they’re sold to family, I don’t care. If they were bought up by — say — Rupert Murdoch, then we would be in trouble.

  2. Jeff NYC says

    Family or not, this is worrisome: “In February, PlanetOut reported a $51.2 million loss for 2007. The company’s accumulated deficit on Dec. 31, 2007 was about $89.5 million.”

  3. HiSurfer says

    PlanetOut Inc. agreed to try to save its magazine and book publishing business to Here Networks for $6 million in cash.
    In February, PlanetOut reported a $51.2 million loss for 2007. The company’s accumulated deficit on Dec. 31, 2007 was about $89.5 million. Here will try to take on that debt or claim bankruptcy.
    As part of a private placement in July 2007, through which PlanetOut raised $24 million after fees, the company was obliged to try and sell off what it calls “our adult businesses,” but it has so far not even gotten a nibble and is unable to sell them. The company needs more money, but said in a March regulatory filing that “raising additional financing will be very difficult, if it could be obtained at all,” we are bleeding money and are going to have to close the magazines.
    The company had 237 employees at the end of 2007. The company will be closing its New York and LA office, leaving many employees out of work. Here agrees that loss of jobs is part of the business

  4. says

    PlanetOut’s financial problem are due to its expansion into the gay cruise business – where it has lost millions. I would love for another gay media conglomerate to emerge from this or similar deals.

  5. Colette says

    PNO Sucks. They had a monopoly, and now it’s over; they didn’t keep up with the times, and the once robust Advocate is now a FREE throw away. Shame. (yes, I know, it was having probs before they bought it, but they didn’t help it!) Too bad they didn’t realize earlier that myspace, facebook, a4a, manhunt, don’t charge (for the most part) and have much more dynamic features. At least they sold RSVP before they completely destroyed it. Now hopefully HERE will rescue the print pubs, and PNO can try to save their online empire…if they can keep up with technology – it’s all about rss and mobile chat now. Guess we’ll see.

  6. says

    $6 million? LOL. And meanwhile, – just the domain name – sells for nearly $3 million. Unreal.

  7. Darnyou says

    I read that If a company that is losing 6 Million A year doing business a certain way, how would they be able to maintain the status quo and be expected to magically turn things around? The printing costs will cut drastically, the quality will be compromised and all of the top jobs will be trimmed by 75% and the competent Here Network team will absorb all those leadership positions. NY & LA will close and a handful of jobs will be moved to San Fran. The top Here team staff are already applying for the print jobs internally. The magazine will become program guides in essence for the network programming and the internal workings will become a blood bath.
    This makes sense but do all the jobs get cut before the sale is done or will the Here women have to do all the firing? Where is Here on cable? I have never seen it.

  8. TwinSister says

    Hey Toby – Planetout had two higher offers but the greedy C.#.#.T Mcgee did not want to take them because her job might be in jeopardy. And after driving the company into the ground, she wanted to get her CUT of the new deal before she abandoned ship to the C.#.#.T farm in Oregon or where ever selfish bosses who only are on the lookout for their self interests. The company was duped and no one seems to care. The staff who have worked tirelessly to put out a quality publication are the ones who get a big stinky t..wat juice shower. The deal stinks and the share holders are furious. I cannot believe the embarrassment within the LGBT community.

  9. Chris says

    This is definitely sad news as there are some great people who work at PlanetOut in all its offices. Yes, the management of PNO made bad business decisions but this is really sad news for the gay community and for the good people who worked for PlanetOut. Whoever made the assessment about the executives being selfish and Ms. McGee running the business into the ground are on the right track. For Xmas 2006, they cancelled all employee bonuses but made sure to pay themselves hefty sums while they gave the rest of us a PlanetOut t-shirt.

  10. Friendster says

    Chris: They not only cut Xmas bonuses, but schedule an executive retreat for themselves while employees worked through the holidays to continue to put out a great product. The WOMEN or should I say Woman? – at the top, really focuses on her self interests. I do hope that the new team is successful and take a look at the current management team and releases them all. Keeping the work horses is in their best interest – as they edit the FAT.

  11. JTluvr says

    Wow. $6 million. How the mighty have fallen… Advocate and Out were actually very good magazines at one time, but the editing became poor, the stories have become uninteresting and they did not grow with their readership. Do I still want to see who’s out, who’s not out celebrity twink coverstories? I can get that anywhere now.

    The continual lack of diversity in their coverage, for me, as an African American gay man, turned me off years ago.

    Interestingly, I interviewed for an editor position at PlanetOut a few years ago. Not one non-White face (except for the receptionist). When I said I’d like to bring more diversity and a stronger news angle to the pub (I’m a TV and newsmagazine veteran), their eyes glazed over. No interest.

    They wanted spreads with pretty boys, luxury items and exotic locales. The offered salary was laughable.

    In many ways, I’m glad the magazines are in other hands. I hope someone can resurrect them and do us all proud.

  12. luke kennedy says

    So Planetout sold RSVP, now they’ve sold Out and Advocate so they can concentrate on If you read the article – they’ve sold the business that was the most profitiable, to concentrate on which is “contributing less to it’s revenue for each of the last three years”. Why would you do that!???

  13. says


    The print magazines were probably the only ones that had value to them. Furthermore, OUGHT to be something inexpensive to run and easy for people on the internet to find. If they’d make it a halfway decent site, they could really rake in the dough. So I guess they’re going to focus on that, like the article said, though they’re in such a steep hole that I don’t really see how they get themselves out of it. I don’t see how they lure people away from the Manhunts of the world, either, so would in reality have to become something quite different.

  14. hambone says

    Much of this talk is the groundless, damaging poison that The Advocate and Out (and Traveler) don’t need, especially from the LGBT community. Moaning ex-employees, bitter failed interviewees and uninformed “insiders”; why do they all flock here to spread their ill-concealed glee and to forecast job losses? These mags have been bought by a passionate gay company who’ve given no indication that they want to close offices or replace staff, and might be the best future for the large number of staff they have. Clearly, support is too much to ask for, but at least take your whining elsewhere.

  15. BRUNO says

    Hambone, that’s what the comments are for – to moan and whine. And the gays really need to stick to design, writing, and other creative gay jobs, they clearly weren’t cut out to be business people.

  16. Charles Lemos says

    Ouch! What’s left then? They sold the cruise business as they should have but this move is dire indeed. I haven’t looked at the stock price since they did their reverse split. Not good.