How things go full circle. Mike Magee has sold The Inquirer to VNU. Guy Kewney has already blogged regarding his possible role as a catalyst for the deal.
This is an interesting story for a number of reasons. Mike founded The Register with John Lettice and Drew Cullen before falling out with them in 2001 (although many rumours emerged as to the real reason for the bust up, I don’t think anyone other than the participants really know what went on there). He left and set up The Inquirer shortly afterwards – I know a few people at the time weren’t sure whether Mike would be able to replicate the success of The Reg – but he ploughed his own furrow and getting a media giant like VNU to buy it must be viewed as somewhat of a coup.
What remains to be seen is to what extent The Inquirer will retain its unique editorial style now that it is under the VNU wing. The Inquirer (like the Reg) has never been one to pull its punches. Take for example Intel’s Guide To The European Press – whoever was Intel’s PR at the time must have wanted the ground to open up and swallow them.
Of course the terms of the deal are undisclosed. What next we ask ourselves? The Register being bought by IDG?
All the best to Mike on his return to Broadwick Street. At least now the distance from the office to the Star and Garter and Blue Posts can be measure in feet rather than miles.