Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Helium -- sold!

Printing company RR Donnelley has bought Helium.

The news was announced on the Helium forums, the Helium blog, and in a press release.

What does it mean for us writers?   Anyone have any guesses? And what about the 10 million dollars? Was RR Donnelley the mystery investor that put in the 10 million a few weeks ago? Maybe it was like a dowry or a hope chest, something to get the bride Helium plumped up, rouged, and ready for the wedding to its long-time suitor, RR.


One more turn in the content-site soap opera.

Any brave souls who want to invest their hard-earned pennies in Helium now have a chance to do so, at least indirectly, as the new parent company is publicly traded on Nasdaq under the symbol RRD.

Here's the press release:

RR Donnelley Expands Content Creation Through Delivery Capabilities With Acquisition of Helium, World's Largest Writing Community

Online Site Provides Enhanced Model for Content Used in Digital and Printed Communications

CHICAGO, Jun 21, 2011 (GlobeNewswire via COMTEX) -- R. R. Donnelley Sons Company announced that it has acquired Andover, MA based Helium, a company in which it took an equity position in September 2009. Helium ( www.helium.com ) is the world's largest writing community and social publishing platform, serving publishers and other content managers with cost-effective, premium local and lifestyle editorial content. Its freelance Marketplace enables publishers and others to access and commission content used in books, websites, catalogs, newspapers, magazines and other communications.

More after the jump:

"This is a superb addition to our suite of content creation, management and delivery services," said Thomas J. Quinlan III, RR Donnelley's President and Chief Executive Officer. "Our previous investment in Helium gave us the opportunity to demonstrate its fit with our global offering. In combination with our premedia capabilities Helium expands our content creation resources to enable us to offer end-to-end services to publishers and other customers. We believe that no other provider is capable of packaging an offer that so broadly encompasses each phase of content management, from inception to delivery."

Helium's online community offers publishers, catalogers and other customers stock and custom content as well as a comprehensive range of editorial solutions.

"Since taking a position in Helium we have had an opportunity to expose this content development service to a broad range of publishing, multi-channel retailing and other customers," said John Paloian, the company's Chief Operating Officer. "The ability to bundle solutions such as Helium's with our complete offering of content delivery resources distinguishes RR Donnelley in a unique way. It allows us to address our customers' needs across the full breadth of the supply chain."

Recent acquisitions Journalism Online, 8touches and Nimblefish join with Helium in accelerating RR Donnelley's ability to provide services and resources beyond its traditional scope.

"We are uniquely positioned to help publishers and other customers originate content, deliver it through a variety of media and even enact systems that increase revenue by allowing online publications to charge for access to selected content on their websites," concluded Quinlan.

About RR Donnelley

RR Donnelley is a global provider of integrated communications. Founded more than 146 years ago, the company works collaboratively with more than 60,000 customers worldwide to develop custom communications solutions that reduce costs, enhance ROI and ensure compliance. Drawing on a range of proprietary and commercially available digital and conventional technologies deployed across four continents, the company employs a suite of leading Internet based capabilities and other resources to provide premedia, printing, logistics and business process outsourcing products and services to leading clients in virtually every private and public sector.

1 comment:

  1. Helium will have to drop it's "must rate in order to get paid" model if it doesn't want to continue to lose good writers. Yes, I know a lot of people don't mind, but because all writers - good and bad - have to rate, that means the overall rating quality will be about average at best. Tends to reflect in the quality of the site as a whole.

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