While most Comic-Con attendees are bringing home swag, Legendary Entertainment will leave San Diego having acquired multi-platform and accurately named entity Nerdist Industries.
The announcement was made by Tim Connors, chief operating officer of Legendary Entertainment. The deal seems like a perfect fit, since Nerdist’s audience members are highly likely to be fans of internationally successful Legendary productions like Inception, The Dark Knight, and all films in The Hangover franchise.
Nerdist was founded by comedian and zeitgeist polestar Chris Hardwick (pictured) and operated by CEO Peter Levin, the entrepreneur who previously co-founded GeekChicDaily with Peter Guber’s Mandalay Entertainment Group. Guber was a significant shareholder in Nerdist and has continuously served as a key advisor.
Legendary founder Thomas Tull was an early investor in Nerdist, and now Hardwick and Levin both report to him as co-presidents of Legendary’s digital business: Hardwick as co-president Digital Content and Levin as co-president Digital Strategy.
“We’ve been impressed with how Chris and Peter have harnessed the Nerdist platform to create and deliver high-quality, relevant content, and then develop one-on-one relationships with the fans we see as Legendary’s core psychographic,” said Tull.
Nerdist has an aggregate audience of 15 million consumers across its properties, which include a website, YouTube channel, podcast network, live events, newsletters and other ways of connecting with fanboys of all genders.
“This amazing deal allows Nerdist to not only scale our existing business beyond what we could have imagined, but also to extend into film and television while symbiotically supporting Legendary’s digital strategies,” said Hardwick. “Legendary’s ‘let’s just make stuff that we really want to see exist in the world’ philosophy is exactly aligned with ours.”
The acquisition calls for Nerdist to maintain complete editorial autonomy and operations – factors which were not negotiable when the deal was being struck – while benefitting from Legendary Entertainment’s resources and platform.
“Legendary’s vision and trajectory as a top-down leader in providing genre-themed content to a very discriminating audience is the ideal environment for Nerdist to thrive. The fact that we can retain the independent nature of the brand while working closely with the team at Legendary is an exciting next step in the evolution of the Nerdist Industries brand,” said Levin.
Nerdist – http://www.nerdist.com
Legendary Entertainment – http://www.legendary.com
The Hollywood Reporter – Legendary Entertainment Acquires Nerdist Industries
Photo by Flickr user theNerdPatrol, used under Creative Commons license