Essence Acquired By Independent African-American Owned Company; All-Black, All-Women Executive Team To Own Equity Stake In The Business

Essence Communications Inc., which owns Essence Magazine and Essence Festival, has been acquired by an independent African-American-owned company, Essence Ventures LLC.

According to The Root, Essence Ventures announced that the black women’s lifestyle guide has gone back to black ownership with its acquisition. The company, acquired by Richelieu Dennis who is also the founder of Shea Moisture, plans to expand the multi-platform brand’s digital businesses, as it continues to “plant its rich content” in more global markets, according to Essence Ventures’ release.
“ . . . [W]e are excited to be able to return this culturally relevant and historically significant platform to ownership by the people and the consumers whom it serves, and offer new opportunities for the women leading the business to also be partners in the business,” Dennis said of the Essence brand acquisition.
As for Essence’s leadership, the brand’s president will continue to head the company, however, she will also join the board of directors and receive an equity stake in the company.
“This acquisition of Essence represents the beginning of an exciting transformation of our iconic brand as it evolves to serve the needs and interests of multigenerational black women around the world in an even more elevated and comprehensive way across print, digital, e-commerce and experiential platforms,” Michelle Ebanks said. “In addition, it represents a critical recognition, centering and elevation of the black women running the business from solely a leadership position to a co-ownership position,” she continued, in reference to the brand’s executive team, which is comprised of black women.

About MsJennyb

Jen is a Writer and Content Curator for Baller Alert, who writes under the alias “MsJennyb.” In this role, Jen develops and contributes relevant special-themed content to attract readers. Before joining the Entertainment Industry via Baller Alert, Jen spent one year as a Freelance Writer and two years as a Human Resources assistant in a corporate office. Jen has a degree in Criminal Justice from Rutgers University with a concentration in Africana Studies.

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