SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Rodale Inc, a privately held media company known for publishing magazines such as Men’s Health and Runner’s World said on Wednesday that its board of directors had decided to explore strategic alternatives, including a potential sale of the company.
Rodale is the latest publishing company trying to figure out its future in an online world where readers’ tastes have shifted away from print, leading to advertising declines across the industry.
Most large media conglomerates have hived off their print businesses. Time Inc (TIME.N), the publicly traded publisher of Time and Sports Illustrated magazines, ended a strategic review in April after talks with another publisher Meredith Corp (MDP.N) broke off.
Chief Executive Maria Rodale said in a statement that “we are excited to explore opportunities for potential buyers of our business,” that can build on its brands.
Rodale said it is reviewing a sale of the entire business as well as some of its units. It could also decide not to sell, it said. A source familiar with the process who did not want to be named said the company would reach out to a wide range of buyers including other media companies and private equity firms.
Rodale’s valuation could not be learned and it does not disclose any financials. It said its brands reach 100 million people globally.
Founded in 1942 in Emmaus, Pennsylvania, the family controlled company focuses on magazines and books that are focused on health and fitness such as Prevention and Bicycling magazine. It has also published books by celebrities such as Jessica Alba and Alicia Silverstone.
Rodale said in a press release that it had hired boutique investment bank Allen & Co LLC to assist in the process.
Reporting by Liana B. Baker in San Francisco; editing by Diane Craft