The Onion Sold by G/O Media

G/O Media announced on Thursday that it had sold The Onion, a satirical news site, to a group of digital media veterans.

The Onion, which started in 1988 in Wisconsin as a weekly satirical newspaper and later became a website, is known for its parodies of current events. For the last decade, it has republished the same headline after nearly every mass shooting: “‘No Way to Prevent This,’ Says Only Nation Where This Regularly Happens.”

The website is the latest to be shed by G/O Media, which still publishes a handful of stalwart internet brands like Gizmodo, The Root and Quartz. In recent years, the company sold off Jezebel, Lifehacker, Deadspin and the A.V. Club.

In an email to G/O Media staff that was obtained by The New York Times, Jim Spanfeller, the chief executive, said the company was “undergoing an extensive review of our portfolio with the intention of coring down to our leading sites in terms of audience and revenues.” He said G/O Media had agreed to sell to “a new Chicago-based firm called Global Tetrahedron.”

“This company is made up of four digital media veterans with a profound love for The Onion and comedy-based content,” Mr. Spanfeller wrote. “The site’s new owners have agreed to keep The Onion’s entire staff intact and in Chicago, something we insisted be part of the deal.”

Mr. Spanfeller did not specify the price of the deal, and a spokesman for G/O Media said he had no further details.

The name Global Tetrahedron is, in true Onion fashion, a winking reference to a sinister fictional company featured in the book “Our Dumb Century,” which was written by The Onion’s staff and published in 1999.

The real-life Global Tetrahedron is backed by Jeff Lawson, a co-founder and former chief executive of the technology communications company Twilio, according to three people familiar with the matter as well as corporate filings. The group also involves Ben Collins, a senior reporter from NBC News, according to those people.

Noah Shachtman, the former editor in chief of Rolling Stone, has advised on the project, according to two people with knowledge of the deal.

G/O Media was formed in 2019 by the private equity firm Great Hill Partners after it bought a collection of websites that were once part of Gawker Media.

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