Wanda to sell IRONMAN to Advance

27 Mar 2020

By: Sport Industry Group

American media company Advance Publications has reached an agreement with Wanda to acquire The IRONMAN Group in a deal which values the group at $730 million.

Includes IRONMAN and IRONMAN 70.3 triathlons, the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon Series, and the Epic Series of mountain biking races, among other events, The IRONMAN Group operates 235 events in more than 50 countries, across triathlon, running, trail running, cycling and mountain biking. 

"Today is an important milestone for The IRONMAN Group. We are pleased with this partnership, which is a testament to Advance's belief in the company," said Andrew Messick, President and CEO, The IRONMAN Group. "We remain confident in our future; our focus and objectives are unchanged; and we are ready to face the opportunities and challenges ahead. 

"We thank Wanda Sports Group for its support over the past four years and are proud of what we have accomplished together. We look forward to continuing our work in China with Wanda Sports Group in the coming years."

It has also been announced that Orkila Capital will co-invest in The IRONMAN Group and Jesse Du Bey, Managing Partner of Orkila, will rejoin IRONMAN’s Board of Directors alongside Messick and Advance. Du Bey was previously a Managing Director at Providence Equity Partners, and led their 2008 investment in The IRONMAN Group.

Janine Shelffo, Chief Strategy and Development Officer, Advance said: "We are pleased to welcome The IRONMAN Group to the Advance family of companies. The core IRONMAN Group values of endurance and perseverance resonate strongly at Advance, a one hundred year-old business that has differentiated itself through long-term focus and commitment.  

“We are delighted to partner with Andrew and his executive team as they plan to resume exceptional race experiences for their passionate athletes, and to support the long-term growth of the business. We're also pleased to join forces with Orkila and are grateful for the invaluable experience with The IRONMAN Group that they bring to our partnership."

Jesse Du Bey, Managing Partner of Orkila added: "I look forward to this new chapter with The IRONMAN Group. Since I last worked with Andrew and his team, the company has experienced significant growth in its global triathlon event footprint and has successfully expanded into new areas such as running, trail running and mountain biking. I am thrilled that Orkila is partnering with Advance, Andrew and The IRONMAN Group to help build this great family of brands into the future."