Interactive One acquires Russell Simmons' GlobalGrind to reach more Millennials

(December 18, 2014) Interactive One, the number one online platform for the African American and New Urban community, announced today that it has acquired GlobalGrind, founded by Russell Simmons. Details of the transaction were not disclosed.  

This acquisition comes on the heels of iOne's existing sales, content, technology, product and marketing partnership with GlobalGrind which began in April 2013. Since this partnership began,'s reach has grown approximately 60 percent (rising from 2.5 million unique visitors per month in August 2013 to a projected 4.1 million in December 2014).

"This acquisition, which perfectly aligns with our existing multimedia brands, allows us to exponentially fast track our Millennial channel expansion strategy by leveraging GlobalGrind's highly-regarded content," said Alfred Liggins, president and CEO of iOne parent company Radio One, Inc.

Following this acquisition, GlobalGrind Founder Russell Simmons and co-President Michael Skolnik will remain actively involved, with Skolnik staying on board as editor-in-chief.

GlobalGrind will anchor a new Millennials channel for Interactive One (iOne), made up of more than a dozen sites that target this demographic, including Stuff Fly People Like. During the last year, iOne has collectively shown impressive growth in reach (+145 percent to 33 million unique visitors per month).

GlobalGrind is an all-encompassing destination that covers the "Hip" side of Pop culture across multiple verticals -- Entertainment, Celebrity, Music, Style and Fashion, Culture, News and Politics. GlobalGrind provides a platform for an active cross-cultural audience of influencers to consume and interact with compelling content and unique digital experiences.

Noted Mr. Simmons, "I have been very proud of the care Interactive One has given my baby under our partnership to date, and am extremely excited to be contributing my points of view on trends and issues of utmost importance within the community, particularly social justice. GlobalGrind will continue to be a pop culture tastemaker and voice for the hip-hop generation."

Added Mr. Skolnik: "Having worked closely with Alfred, Tom and the entire Interactive One family, I look forward to this new chapter as we collectively look to expand iOne's coverage in the areas that matter most to our audience, and to do so while working closely with our new colleagues across the organization."

Stated iOne President Tom Newman, "Having had the opportunity to already work closely with the GlobalGrind team during the last two years, we have a very clear understanding of how to take this wonderful brand to the next level while holding on to the aspects that have made it the powerhouse it is today with its Millennial audience." He added, "GlobalGrind, in addition to bolstering our presence in the digital media space, nicely complements our flagship properties, including HelloBeautiful, TheUrbanDaily and NewsOne, with more to come in 2015."