When it comes to successful media companies, Business Insider is one of the most interesting stories out there. From humble beginnings as a blog founded by Henry Blodget in 2007, it has now become a billion-dollar brand with a staff of over 400 people. So how did this happen? Let’s take a look.
Starting out, Business Insider was a classic blog, covering topics related to finance, technology, and business. Blodget, who previously was a financial analyst and the CEO of an online financial publication, had a good sense of the industry and was able to attract a lot of readers through his engaging and informative writing.
Over time, Blodget hired other writers and editors, expanding the topics covered and the breadth of the publication. Business Insider also started to experiment with different types of content, such as slideshows and videos, to attract a wider audience.
One of the keys to Business Insider’s success was its ability to iterate quickly and try new things. As Blodget himself said in a 2016 interview with Recode, “We’ve really embraced experimentation and the idea that the world is changing fast, so you have to be willing to evolve with it.”
As Business Insider grew, it also attracted the attention of investors. In 2015, German media company Axel Springer acquired a majority stake in the company for $343 million. This marked a significant turning point for the publication, as it was no longer just a scrappy startup but part of a much larger organization.
Under Axel Springer’s ownership, Business Insider continued to expand and diversify its offerings. It launched new verticals such as Insider Food and Insider Travel, and acquired other media companies like tech publication Tech Insider. In 2018, Axel Springer bought out the remaining shares of Business Insider for a reported $375 million, valuing the company at over $1 billion.
Today, Business Insider has a global audience of over 100 million people, and its reporters and editors cover a wide variety of topics including politics, celebrity news, and sports. It has also become known for its investigative reporting and breaking news coverage, with many of its stories being cited by major news outlets around the world.
So what can we learn from the rise of Business Insider? One lesson is the importance of adaptability and experimentation – in today’s fast-changing media landscape, companies need to be willing to try new things and pivot quickly if something isn’t working. Another lesson is the value of strong editorial leadership – Blodget’s vision and expertise in the finance and business world helped to set Business Insider apart from other media companies, and his willingness to take risks and try new things was a major factor in the company’s success.
Overall, Business Insider’s journey from blog to billion-dollar brand is a testament to the power of entrepreneurship, innovation, and good old-fashioned hard work. It’s inspiring to see what can be achieved when you have a bold idea and the determination to see it through.