Longtime Gawker managing editor Lockhart Steele is leaving Gawker Media to devote his new media expertise to Curbed, the burgeoning real estate and food-focused blog empire, FishbowlNY has learned. Steele will leave Gawker at the end of June. Steele joined Gawker in February 2005.
In an unusual twist, Gawker Media czar Nick Denton will help fund Curbed as the site searches for investment capital, according to a source with knowledge of the arrangement. Gawker Media is already a backer of Treehugger (Denton’s a member of the board) and Wists, the social shopping network.
Gawker will split Steele’s former position in two — one to manage the gossip-focused sites, the other tech — with successors to be named in a couple weeks, according to the source.
Under Steele’s watch, Gawker Media has seen traffic nearly quadruple, from 28 million to 110 million page views per month, according to traffic provided by Gawker.
Kyle Crafton, mediabistro.com’s former CFO, left in May to join Curbed.