Time Inc (TIME) will sell a majority stake in the monthly African-American women's lifestyle magazine Essence in the company's first major move since it decided not to sell itself in April, the Wall Street Journal reported.
Time CEO Rich Battista said there's still "real upside" for Essence, so the publisher will keep a stake. But it's looking for a "strategic partner with investment capital" to "unlock value" for the magazine.
Essence's events business, growing digital presence and strong relationships with marketers are reasons for optimism, Battista noted. Essence is the only African-American brand with a dedicated Snap Inc (SNAP) - Get Snap, Inc. Class A Report Snapchat Discover channel.
The sale comes three months after Time ended conversations with potential buyers and said it would refocus on its core brands. Those include People, InStyle, Real Simple and TIME. Battista said he viewed Essence as a core, but he's hoping for a deal by the end of the year.
Time stock traded up nearly 3% in early afternoon.
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