Peter Kafka at Recode:
The Times will pay more than $30 million, including retention bonuses and other payouts, for the startup, according to people familiar with the transaction. Brian Lam, a former editor at Gawker Media’s Gizmodo, founded The Wirecutter in 2011, and has self-funded the company’s growth.
Brian Lam had a vision and built The Wirecutter to meet his vision. He did a fantastic job, and hired some amazing people to build it with him. Having written a couple of Wirecutter projects, I have seen how the organization has tried very hard to build a new kind of editorial process that isn’t indebted to old assumptions. It’s tough stuff—systematic product reviews in dozens of product categories is about as high a degree of difficulty as it gets.
Sometimes I disagree with what I read at Wirecutter, but I’ll tell you this: I always visit it before I buy pretty much anything. And my house is full of products bought on The Wirecutter’s recommendation.
Congratulations to Brian and the entire Wirecutter team, and congratulations to the New York Times for snapping up a gem of a digital media brand.