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Forums: Fertile Grounds for Breaking News

Discussion in 'General Yachting Discussion' started by YachtForums, Jul 13, 2019.

  1. YachtForums

    YachtForums Publisher/Admin

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2002
    Messages:
    19,388
    Location:
    South Florida
    I've been following the development of the 2020 Supra and C8 Corvette for what seems like an eternity. The forums dedicated to the various brands and models enjoy a cult-like following. Owners, enthusiasts and buyers are often way ahead of traditional media with sightings, rumors or leaked images. These forums have now become the go-to place for editors, writers and industry folks who need to be on the editorial edge.

    I've recently noticed a trend with some of these automotive news sites as they have began citing the source of their information, which is usually one of the forums. For years, I've watched our discussions become the latest news stories for several yachting magazines and websites, yet they have never given credit to the members of YF. I suppose if we weren't an online magazine they saw as a threat to their business model, you guys would get more credit.

    On that note, it's time to disclose something... about 4 years ago I was contacted by a large publishing conglomerate that was interested in acquiring YachtForums. I kept in contact with them, mostly for curiosity sake. They own a good number of titles, both print and digital. They were also in the show business, but recently sold their interest. As their print model is drying up, they became more serious about moving forward with an acquisition. Their plan was to use YF as an up-sell to prolong their print model.

    I'd like to think I'm smart enough to recognize opportunities like this may only happen once or twice in a lifetime. An NDA was inbound, but I declined. Sometimes it's not about money. It's about doing something you love and if you’re lucky, maybe making a difference. Although I have days that my brain is fried and my eyeballs are hard boiled, I’m proud of the resource we're building.

    To all you guys that add to the collective knowledge base, thank you for being here with me, Ron, Lars and Kevin. We couldn't do it without you. :)
    Kevin likes this.
  2. PacBlue

    PacBlue Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2009
    Messages:
    1,401
    Location:
    Dana Point, Ca
    Enjoy the YF a lot, thanks for sharing your and your teams passion.
  3. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2013
    Messages:
    4,971
    Location:
    Fort Lauderdale
    Everyone owns businesses for different reasons. Having partners or shareholders changes things dramatically but even in large companies there's a huge difference. Most are today directed toward short come profits and shareholder benefits. I grew up working in an environment that was interested in buying and holding and the long term and when our parent made acquisitions it was to build the businesses further, not to flip them.

    We own businesses today as initially a hobby and now a means of providing employment. Profit was never our objective although at least break even is necessary for any businesses to survive. Our CEO's are regularly approached by interested buyers for various pieces but it's not even a discussion.

    I think you did right in talking to them. You don't really know your true feelings until they're challenged. I think you were scared to go further because you were afraid to get an actual offer. You didn't want to be tempted. That's our philosophy. We don't want to even hear the number. Some would say you were short sighted and at least should have heard the number, but we understand completely. Yes, a sale might have been a once in a lifetime opportunity but then hasn't owning YF and JF been the same? If you're ready to pack up and retire, might then be the time but giving up control is frightening. Your vision may be carried forward but more often the buyer's vision is much different. It's amazing how often you see people sell and come back later to buy the business back and try to put it back on track. Selling and being happy requires two things. First is finding something you want to do in the next phase. Second, is being able to never look back, not follow what your predecessors do.

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