Thrillist Media Group, home of Thrillist and JackThreads, was a pioneer in the integration of content and e-commerce. Thrillist was a leading digital-first lifestyle media brand. The company needed a new round of funding to invest in new content verticals, video production, and the growing ad sales team. Meanwhile, JackThreads was in the middle of a pivot to building its Private Label business, as the flash sales era had come to an end. JackThreads needed fresh capital to complete that pivot.
The Series B fundraise process hit early headwinds, as media-focused investors were leery of DTC e-commerce, and DTC investors didn’t want to invest in a media business. The fact that Thrillist was in high growth mode while JackThreads was in the middle of a pivot further complicated the investor pitch.
Five months into our fundraise, it was clear we had to change our approach. As a result, we orchestrated a spinout of JackThreads from Thrillist and simultaneously completed a Series B for both companies from two different investment groups. The spinout of JackThreads included the process of splitting our management, technology, and operations teams and the execution of a transition services agreement to ensure both companies could fully operate on their own as independent companies.
As a standalone media brand, Thrillist could dedicate all of its resources toward growing its audience and sales without the inevitable distractions from also trying to manage a DTC brand in transition. The spinout and fundraise laid the groundwork for a much bigger deal 12 months later, when Thrillist merged with three other media brands to create Group Nine Media.