SAN DIEGO (BRAIN) — Competitor Group Inc., which has owned Velo magazine, VeloNews.com and VeloPress since 2008, is now interested in selling off the brands, a spokesman for the San Diego-based company said Thursday.
CGI also would like to sell its TriRock series of triathlons as it refocuses on the running market, said Kurt Hoy, a CGI senior vice president and group publisher.
CGI, then owned by Falconhead Capital, bought Boulder, Colorado-based Inside Communications in 2008. That purchase included VeloNews, VeloNews.com, VeloPress, VeloGear, VeloSwap and Inside Triathlon. VeloGear was later sold, and Inside Triathlon was moved to San Diego and then shut down in early 2014. VeloNews was renamed Velo (the website is still VeloNews) and remains based in Boulder, as does VeloPress.
CGI launched the TriRock series 2010. It currently has eight events. In 2012, Falconhead sold Competitor Group to Calera Capital.
Hoy said that senior managers at CGI have recently decided to focus on becoming "the world's greatest running company," and thus began looking at selling its bike-related properties.
"We've had a number of interested parties who have inquired about these properties, especially the Boulder-based properties," said Hoy. "I think this move will allow someone to become a steward for those brands and keep (Velo and VeloPress) aligned with cycling at their core."
CGI also owns Competitor, Women's Running and Triathlete magazines and has expanded rapidly into owning and operating events, including the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon series and the TriRock series. Hoy said CGI would retain Triathlete because of the synergies between the triathlon and running markets.
Felix Magowan, a former principal in Inside Communications and former publisher of VeloNews, has made no secret in recent years of his desire to buy back the businesses that he help build. Magowan and other investors bought VeloNews from its Vermont-based publisher in the late 1980s and moved it to Boulder. He told BRAIN this week that while he's had no formal discussions recently with Competitor, he remains interested.
"(VeloPress publisher) Ted Costantino and (Velo editor in chief) Neal Rogers have done a great job managing VeloPress and VeloNews, and Competitor Group have been shrewd stewards of the brands these past six years," Magowan said. "It would be a privilege to again be involved with assets that are so loved by consumers, retailers and the industry."