Hearst Acquires UGO

    July 24, 2007

Hearst Corporation has purchased UGO Networks, an online entertainment company that targets men.

The announcement was made by Victor F. Ganzi, president & CEO, Hearst Corporation; J Moses, CEO of UGO Networks, Inc.; and Kenneth Bronfin, president of Hearst Interactive Media, the division that will manage UGO. Terms of the deal have not been released but Forbes is estimating that Hearst paid $100 million for the site.

With the purchase of UGO, Hearst will gain, according to Ganzi, "one of the most popular men’s lifestyle brands on the Web. UGO.com, the flagship Web site, is a first-stop destination for the latest news and content on games, movies, television, film, DVDs, music, sports, women and comic books."

UGO has an audience of more than 11 million unique visitors in the U.S. and around 28 million globally. UGO says it reaches one in 10 online users in the male 18-to 34-year-old demographic.

"UGO Networks will be another building block in Hearst’s growing Interactive Media division," Ganzi added. "This merger with UGO Networks will allow us to expand our digital media lineup and to broaden the range of our entertainment properties."

Bronfin said, "Over the years, J Moses and his team have developed UGO into a very strong Internet business, with a healthy mix of internal and third-party content. As an innovator in the digital entertainment space, UGO continues to build a very substantial, highly sought-after audience base.

"Hearst’s acquisition of the business will provide a means for UGO to more rapidly expand its content and services offerings while also building its advertiser base."