NEW YORK— The B2B media company ICD Publications has sold two brands, the iconic Hotel Business and a partner brand, InspireDesign, to Rubelmann Capital. The New York-based M&A advisory firm Media Advisory Partners represented ICD in the transaction, which closed at the end of December.
Hotel Business, a multi-platform brand including 11 print issues published annually is the leading voice in the hotel and hospitality sectors, covering the dominant issues, trends and transformative innovation across the hospitality industry. InspireDesign serves the hotel design market and is published four times per year.
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Mark Holdreith, Co-Founding Partner of Media Advisory Partners, said, “It’s a pivotal moment for the hospitality industry, as hotels and related businesses navigate current challenges and gear up for a post-pandemic world. In Hotel Business and InspireDesign, professionals have an irreplaceable partner that has served the lodging industry with distinction, and a vital source of design inspiration and innovation.”
New York City-based Rubelmann Capital, which has experience owning media assets, is the perfect home for the ICD brands, Holdreith said. “They bring not just investment capital, but the expertise to guide the growth of these two brands through 2021 and beyond.”
Rubelmann previously owned Backstage.com, a B2B media brand covering the performing arts industry. It announced that the hospitality and media-industry veteran Armin Molavi will serve as CEO of the new entity comprising Hotel Business and InspireDesign. The existing editorial and sales teams, led by Publisher Allen Rolleri and Editor in Chief Christina Trauthwein, will continue with their brands.
“Hotel Business is an iconic publication and media brand that is at the intersection of a rapidly changing hospitality industry,” said Peter Rappaport, founder of Rubelmann Capital. “The extraordinary leadership, editorial and sales teams have set the standard for professionalism, and I am looking forward to working with them to continue to enhance our platform and expand our reach.”
In a statement, Rolleri said the hospitality industry needs strong media brands now more than ever. “The investment by Rubelmann Capital will allow us to take the proven content and marketing platforms the lodging community has relied on for 30 years and build upon them. I am very excited for the road ahead, as well as the growth and opportunities we will be able to offer our community and marketing partners.”
For his part, Molavi said Hotel Business is the go-to platform for the entire hospitality industry. “As we enter this period of extraordinary transformation, we are excited to chronicle those changes for our dedicated audience,” he said in the statement. “Hotel Business is an invaluable resource for anyone who touches the world of hospitality—from industry titans to independent operators, service providers to the big banks and lenders. We are looking forward to our new future together.”