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Ziff Davis announces it is exploring 'strategic alternatives'

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New York—Ziff Davis Holdings, the parent of Ziff Davis Media, Monday announced it is "exploring strategic alternatives," putting the technology publisher officially in play. The company has retained Evercore Partners and Lehman Brothers as financial advisers to assist in a possible sale.

Private equity firm Willis Stein & Partners, which bought the magazine assets of Ziff Davis for $780 million in cash in 1999, would likely take a loss in a sale. The question is how much of a loss.

Ziff Davis' major b-to-b titles include PC Magazine and Baseline. The company also has a research portfolio and a growing array of online products targeting the tech space.

It made the announcement in conjunction with the release of its second-quarter results. The company reported EBITDA grew 84.7% to $5.7 million, up from $3.1 million in last year's second quarter. Consolidated revenue totaled $45.2 million, down from $45.3 million. Online revenue jumped 49%, while print revenue, excluding closed publications, fell 6%.

—Matthew Schwartz

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