Tina Brown Will Leave Daily Beast to Start New Venture

Tina Brown is stepping down as editor-in-chief of IAC/InterActiveCorp’s Daily Beast to start a new venture, capping a tumultuous tenure that included the acquisition -- and sale -- of Newsweek magazine.

Tina Brown Live Media will build on Brown’s Women in the World conference and include “summits, salons and flash debates,” she said in a statement today. She wants both business and editorial control in her next venture, according to a person with knowledge of the matter who asked not to be identified because the plans are private.

Brown, a former editor of the New Yorker and Vanity Fair, started the Daily Beast in 2008 with IAC Chairman Barry Diller, aiming to create a source of breaking news and commentary for the Internet era. IAC acquired a stake in Newsweek in 2010 and combined it with the Daily Beast online. After struggling to make the magazine profitable, IAC sold Newsweek to IBT Media last month for an undisclosed sum, keeping the Daily Beast.

“I leave The Daily Beast knowing it has never been better,” Brown said in the statement. “I am proud, too, of what we did with Newsweek in the battle we waged to save it from the overwhelming forces of media change.”

Brown is negotiating her exit package from the Daily Beast, said a person with knowledge of the discussions. John Avlon, executive editor of the news website, is likely to replace Brown as editor-in-chief, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the decision hasn’t yet been announced.

Diller said earlier this year that publishing a weekly magazine at a time when news has become instantaneous was a “fool’s errand.”

“I wish I hadn’t bought Newsweek,” the billionaire told Bloomberg Television in an interview in April.

Shares of IAC, an Internet holding company that includes Ask.com and Match.com, rose 0.8 percent to $53.16 at the close in New York. The stock has climbed 13 percent this year.

BuzzFeed earlier reported on Brown’s planned departure.

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