The News division of BuzzFeed is going to split off from its parent company and become a serious business.
In a memo sent to staff on Tuesday, BuzzFeed’s CEO Jonah Peretti explained that BuzzFeed would split into two divisions. One division for entertainment and the other for news. This has led some in the industry to suspect that the news division is being readied for sale, as it isn’t as profitable as the entertainment side.
Heading the News division, the current editor-in-chief Ben Johnson will boss over its health reporters, investigative team, foreign correspondents, and its video crew. In the memo it was said that BuzzFeed News will focus heavily on video.
“As digital video becomes ubiquitous, every major initiative at BuzzFeed around the world will find an expression as video, just like everything we do works on mobile and social platforms,”Peretti wrote according to Vanity Fair.
During the last few years, BuzzFeed has aggressively built up its newsgathering muscle. It recruited big names like Janine Gibson and Alberto Nardelli, to name just two, from The Guardian. But in 2015 the news side missed its financial targets, which is why people speculate that BuzzFeed is getting ready to ditch news.
However, for Scottish readers, the more important question is of course: if BuzzFeed News is becoming Serious Business, will Jamie Ross still offer Irn Bru to Jeremy Corbyn when he visits the country, and will he still try to find lost Solero ladies in far-away corners of the world?
Inquiring minds demand answers.