For Sale: Ebony Magazine’s Historic Photo Archive

"It's just sitting there," says Johnson Publishing CEO Desiree Rogers

Ebony launched in November, 1945. Seventy years later, Johnson Publishing CEO Desiree Rogers (pictured) is very astutely trying to sell the photo end of that legacy, to ensure the health of Ebony and other closely associated media endeavors.

From the article by Chicago Tribune media reporter Robert Channick:

The historic collection spans 70 years of African-American history, chronicling everyone from Martin Luther King Jr. to Sammy Davis Jr.

Johnson Publishing has had its collection appraised and recently hired a consultant to shop its wealth of iconic images, including a 1969 Pulitzer Prize winning photo of King’s widow and child, taken at his funeral.

Rogers is hoping to sell the archive for $40 million. There’s no doubt that on paper, it’s worth that much. (She suggests to Channick that “in the right hands,” the archive could become the “black Getty Images.”) The bigger question is who will be willing to pay that fair price in today’s cutthroat media world?

Much more info about the current state of Johnson Publishing in Channick’s piece. Read the rest here.

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