Creating the largest digital golf media business in the U.S. and deepening strategic partnership with the PGA TOUR
Golf Digest’s multi-platform content to be distributed globally on GOLFTV powered by PGA TOUR streaming service
Golf Digest Chairman and Editor-in-Chief Jerry Tarde to Join Discovery Golf
NEW YORK, May 13, 2019 – Discovery, Inc. (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) announced today it has acquired Golf Digest from Condé Nast. Golf Digest is the world’s No. 1 golf media brand and will extend Discovery’s global golf media business to the U.S. market through Golf Digest’s multiplatform distribution and reach.
The acquisition creates a powerful programming engine by adding Golf Digest to GOLFTV’s offerings that already include exclusive carriage of the PGA TOUR, the European Tour, and the Ladies European Tour, as well as the Masters Tournament, in select territories outside the U.S. and Discovery’s exclusive global content partnerships with Tiger Woods, winner of 81 PGA TOUR events and 15 major championships, and Francesco Molinari, winner of three PGA TOUR events and the reigning Open champion.
The addition of Golf Digest boosts Discovery’s global golf ecosystem with a leading platform in the U.S., which will allow the company to now reach golf fans with everything associated with the game, including instructional videos, equipment advice, course rankings, travel destinations, online bookings and more.
Additionally, Discovery and the PGA TOUR are expanding their 12-year strategic partnership with a new content and sales relationship in the U.S., among other initiatives. The organizations will deepen their partnership and join forces to create the largest digital network in golf with a one-stop activation platform, now including Golf Digest, for advertisers to engage with fans and players. This includes a full suite of editorial coverage, live and on-demand video streaming, digital, social, print and branded content opportunities. The current Golf Digest sales teams will continue to be responsible for ad sales during a transition period until the Discovery / PGA TOUR sales integration is complete.
David Zaslav, President and CEO of Discovery, Inc. said: “Golf Digest is a world-class brand that has become the ‘go-to’ authority for millions of golf enthusiasts, professional players and global advertisers. It’s a natural strategic fit with Discovery’s goal to be the leading golf media platform in the world. Through our investments with the PGA TOUR, the European Tour and our partnership with Tiger Woods, we wanted to bolster GOLFTV’s international offerings with Golf Digest’s award-winning journalism, broad consumer reach and deep content library while also creating the largest U.S. digital golf business. Jay Monahan and the PGA TOUR have been great partners and we are excited to expand our mutual vision to bring these amazing players and all of their terrific play to more people on more devices in every market in the world.”
Rick Anderson, Chief Media Officer, PGA TOUR, said: “We’re thrilled to deepen our partnership with Discovery, as well as Golf Digest, which has been an official marketing partner of the PGA TOUR since 2006. By combining our assets in the U.S., we’re now able to offer the most robust digital content and product offering for fans, golfers and TOUR partners. The new PGA TOUR / Golf Digest digital network will be the single largest golf network offering unrivaled breadth and depth of content across platforms.”
Discovery will seek to optimize its exclusive global partnership with Tiger Woods across both Golf Digest and PGA TOUR platforms. GOLFTV is collaborating with Woods on a range of content, such as deep-dive instruction to help players improve their game, which began filming last month, and exclusive access to his tournament preparation. The unique collaboration offers an authentic look into the life, mind and performance of the game’s ultimate icon.
Tiger Woods said: “This is an important step in enhancing and expanding the U.S. and global reach of Discovery and GOLFTV. It gives me another platform to tell my story directly to fans and makes my partnership with Discovery even stronger. This acquisition, along with what Discovery and GOLFTV have already done with the PGA TOUR, is great for the game of golf.”
Alex Kaplan, President and General Manager, Discovery Golf, said: “This is a big deal for Discovery to add Golf Digest to our golf portfolio. Adding Golf Digest to GOLFTV and our existing PGA TOUR, European Tour, Tiger and Francesco content will be a big win for the sport. We are offering something unique, whether you’re a fan, player, viewer, brand or advertiser. We can utilize the strengths of both Golf Digest and our burgeoning GOLFTV platform, establishing a global editorial powerhouse delivering content across all platforms to engage and inspire millions of passionate golf fans around the world.”
Golf Digest’s award-winning editorial content, including news, instructional videos, and rankings, as well as tentpoles such as ‘100 Greatest Course Rankings’ and its annual ‘Hot List,’ will drive engagement for GOLFTV around the world, provide opportunities for Discovery to leverage its golf content in the U.S. and bring more exciting opportunities to partner with the PGA TOUR and all the world-class players.
Discovery will seek to leverage its global scale, with reach into 220 markets and territories, to further grow the Golf Digest brand around the world. Golf Digest, which earns nearly half of its revenues from digital advertising, will continue to publish a U.S. monthly print magazine and Discovery will assume the global licenses for editions serving nearly 70 countries.
Golf Digest’s editorial team will join Discovery Golf under the continued leadership of Jerry Tarde, as Editor-in-Chief, Golf Digest, and Global Head of Strategy and Content, Discovery Golf. In addition to overseeing the world-class editorial content of Golf Digest, Tarde will expand his purview to include GOLFTV and report to Alex Kaplan, President and General Manager, Discovery Golf.
Jerry Tarde, Editor-in-Chief, Golf Digest, and Global Head of Strategy and Content, Discovery Golf, said: “Golf Digest has this amazing team of editors, reporters, producers, photographers and contributors – all dedicated to helping golfers improve and be smarter consumers of the game we love. Discovery’s vision to create one global destination for everything a golf fan could want is perfectly aligned with what Golf Digest does every day. As we look to the future, Discovery’s global scale and ability to light up content on all platforms and in every language, combined with the PGA TOUR’s brand, will benefit golf and golfers worldwide.”
Kaplan added: “A critical piece is Golf Digest’s people. We’re thrilled to welcome aboard Golf Digest’s world-class team and its Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, Jerry Tarde, who is widely considered the dean of golf journalism.”
Golf Digest reaches millions every month across all platforms:
• 60 million video views
• 4.8 million readers
• 4.8 million digital uniques
• 2.2 million social followers
More information regarding Golf Digest can be found here. Fans outside the U.S. can find out more about GOLFTV and subscribe by visiting GOLFTV. Access to live coverage and on-demand content is available on mobile and online via GOLF.TV and the GOLFTV app.
Greenhill & Co. served as financial advisor to Condé Nast and Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP served as legal advisor to Condé Nast. Proskauer Rose LLP served as legal advisor to Discovery, Inc.
NOTES TO EDITORS
GOLFTV is available in all international markets (excluding the U.S., China and South Korea).
Imagery and additional supporting assets can be accessed here.
Under the agreement, Discovery will own and operate all brands under the Golf Digest business, including:
• Golf Digest – the world’s No. 1 golf media brand, and the authority on how to play, what to play and where to play. Digital, social and print.
• Golf World – the most comprehensive tournament coverage, incisive commentary, and profiles of the people and events that shape the game. Digital and social.
• Golf Digest Schools – the instruction subscription service offering classic library content, interactive learning with Golf Digest Pros on-demand and live-streamed. Featuring many of the world’s biggest players and best instructors, such as Butch Harmon, David Leadbetter, Hank Haney and Michael Breed.
• The Loop – the millennial-focused platform engaging younger and broader fan communities by reflecting the most intriguing conversations in golf conversations enjoyed by people who play golf. Digital and social.