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BBC Worldwide, the arm of BBC that just sold off Lonely Planet to NC2 Media, quickly moved to assure LP authors (who are mostly freelancers) in a letter from Marcus Arthur, the MD of Global Brands at BBCW. The letter, in full, below.
This morning we announced that BBC Worldwide is selling Lonely Planet to NC2 Media.
BBCW has been exploring options for Lonely Planet for some time now as our focus going forward will be directed towards building BBC brands and content globally and it was clear we could no longer invest the capital necessary to grow the LP brand. Today’s announcement concludes a thorough process we embarked upon to find the right new home for your business.
NC2 Media, under its Executive Director Daniel Houghton and its primary shareholder Brad Kelley, will bring access to capital and a strategic focus that BBC Worldwide would find difficult to offer. And with the growth achieved in areas such as digital/web, emerging markets, magazines and overall market share in guidebook publishing, we appear to be parting ways with a Lonely Planet that’s in good health.
The NC2 team is committed to Lonely Planet’s core book publishing activity, wants to accelerate its digital strategy, and plans to maintain operations in each of the countries where it currently operates. They are passionate about the LP Magazine franchise and understand how to take advantage of technologies in new ways – all the while remaining true to LP’s core purpose of serving travellers as you have always have done.
Personally, it’s been an absolute privilege to have served as Lonely Planet’s Chairman for the past four years and I have been consistently impressed by the creativity and passion you all bring to this unique, treasured and much admired global travel brand.
My sincere thanks for your patience and professionalism in the face of much noise around our ownership and I wish Lonely Planet, its authors and NC2 Media the very best of luck for the future.
All the best,
Managing Director, Global Brands