Gawker is the blog that turned into a media empire. Founded in 2002 as a blog that was "the source for daily Manhattan media news and gossip", Gawker has become a lot more in the last decade. While it has a focus on celebrities and the media industry, in keeping with the abiding interests of founders Nick Denton and Elizabeth Spiers, it has branched out to become a proper media business in its own right.
While Denton is based in New York City, the Gawker Media Group is based in the Cayman Islands, has eight brands including gadget site Gizmodo, boasts 47 million monthly US readers, 4.8 million Facebook fans and 4.7 million Twitter followers. Someone is doing something right.
Denton of course started his media life as a reporter for The Economist and while the FT's investment banking correspondent co-wrote the definitive account of the rogue trader who brought down Barings Bank, so if anyone can work out how to monetise media, he's the man.
With Studio@Gawker – a multimedia creative shop to promote brands across all possible platforms - the company has a plethora of big corporate partners, including Microsoft, Samsung, IBM, American Express, HBO and Mercedes Benz, to name but a few.
Gawker's heady mix of bite size chunks of real global news, funny dog and cat videos, celebrity gossip and the plain weird ("A Bronx Man Tore His Own Head Off in Broad Daylight" and "Widow: Husband's Hairy Chest Reason for Not Defibrillating on Flight" for instance) are an object lesson in how to serve up "news-ertainment" that appeals to and gets big brands on board.