BuzzFeed Goes Broke, Sells Complex for $108.6M, Announces Layoffs

(Dmytro “Henry” AleksandrovHeadline USA) BuzzFeed announced that it will lay off dozens of employees after selling Complex, just a little more than two years after buying the business.

According to BuzzFeed’s Feb. 21, 2024, press release, the sale will form a “new and wide-ranging destination for the future of commerce and media.” The Epoch Times reported that the company announced the $108.6 million all-cash deal.

An additional $5.7 million will be earmarked for the use of the company’s New York offices, severance costs and other employment-related costs.

The sale of Complex is expected to enhance its profitability and allow for greater focus on BuzzFeed, HuffPost, First We Feast and Tasty while also aiding BuzzFeed in taking “meaningful steps toward strengthening its balance sheet and improving liquidity,” the press release stated.

Complex was purchased by BuzzFeed in a nearly $300 million deal in 2021.

As part of the company’s “planned strategic restructuring intended to reduce expenses,” BuzzFeed will also be scrapping 16% of its workforce — a move it expects will yield about $23 million in annualized compensation cost savings.

The press release also added that the “restructuring” is aimed at reducing centralized costs and enabling the company to become “more agile, sustainable and profitable.”

BuzzFeed, First We Feast, HuffPost and Tasty will “each operate entrepreneurially with individual strategies and revenue lines tailored to market and audience dynamics” under the new structure.

The job cuts at the company came nearly a year after it laid off 15% of its workforce and shut down its news division amid a slowdown in digital advertising, shifts in audience behavior and a declining economy, the news source reported. In addition to that, BuzzFeed also cut about 180 staff members in late 2022.

Among other media outlets and publishers that also announced layoffs in recent months were the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Condé Nast, Business Insider, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal.

It was also recently revealed that Soros-backed Vice Media isn’t doing so well either, with the company announcing that it will temporarily shut down operations, lay off hundreds of staffers and cease online publication.