Cox Enterprises, Inc. is a privately held global conglomerate headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia with approximately 55,000 employees and $21 billion in total revenue. Its major operating subsidiaries are Cox Communications, Cox Automotive and Cox Media Group. The company's major national brands include AutoTrader, Kelley Blue Book and more. Through Cox Automotive, the company's international operations stretch across Asia, Australia, Europe and Latin America. Cox Enterprises is currently led by Alexander C. Taylor, a fourth-generation Cox family member and great-grandson of founder James M. Cox. James M. Cox's grandson, James C. Kennedy and other members of the Cox family are on the company's board of directors.
|Founder||James M. Cox|
|James C. Kennedy, Chair|
Alexander C. Taylor, President and CEO
|Products||Telecommunications, Automotive, Mass media|
|Revenue||US$21 billion (2018)|
|Owner||Cox family |
Number of employees
Cox Media Group
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The company was founded in Dayton, Ohio by James M. Cox, who purchased the Dayton Daily News in 1898. Cox later became the Democratic Party candidate for president of the United States in the presidential election of 1920, running unsuccessfully on a ticket that included Franklin D. Roosevelt as the vice presidential candidate.
Years later and at the urging of Governor Cox’s son, James M. Cox Jr. Cox entered the radio business, starting with WHIO] in Dayton in 1935. Governor Cox purchased the Atlanta Journal in 1939 as well as WSB radio station which had gone on air in 1922. On September 29, 1948, television made its debut in Atlanta via Cox’s WSB-TV, which was referred to as “Eyes of the South.” WHIO-TV followed airing on February 23,1949 and was the first television station in Ohio’s Miami Valley.
In 1950, Governor Cox purchased The Atlanta Constitution followed by the acquisition of three cable systems in central Pennsylvania by his son, Jim Cox Jr., in 1962 which had a combined 11,800 subscribers. Over the ensuing decades, Cox made pioneering investments and became the first company to bundle telephone, highspeed internet and digital cable television over a single broadband network. In 1964 Cox’s broadcasting and cable businesses became Cox Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) and opened for trading on the New York Stock Exchange. Cox’s newspapers remained a private company and operated separately from CBC.
In 1968, Jim Cox Jr. helped establish Cox Enterprises, Inc., the private company under which Cox operates today. Additionally, Cox’s cable systems were consolidated into a new company, Cox Cable Communications, Inc. (CCC). By 1971 CCC had become the second-largest company in the cable TV industry. Upon Jim Cox Jr.’s death in 1974, he left his two sisters, Anne Cox Chambers and Barbara Cox, in control of 95% of the privately-owned company.
In 1982, Cox Broadcasting Corporation changed its names to Cox Communications, Inc. The new name came with a new home, as Cox Communications moved its new headquarters to an up-and-coming commercial center on the edge of Atlanta. Cox Enterprises, Inc. Purchased Cox Communications in 1985, the combined corporation, called Cox Enterprises, became the nation’s 13th largest media company. In 1988 then-Executive Vice President Jim Kennedy, grandson of Governor Cox, was promoted to CEO and chairman of Cox Enterprises.
In 1995, The Cox cable division merged with Times Mirror’s cable system, resulting in a new publicly traded company under the name Cox Communications.
In 2004, Jim Kennedy and the Cox family decided to spend $8.4 billion to buy back the 38% of Cox Communications they didn’t own, taking the company private and back under the Cox Enterprises umbrella.
Getting into Automotive
Cox transitioned into the automotive industry in 1965 with the purchase of Black Book. Three years later, Manheim was purchased by Cox as well. The 1980s saw Manheim acquire its first non-U.S. auction in Toronto, Canada, making Cox an international company. In 1999, Autotrader.com was founded revolutionizing the way people buy and sell used cars. In 2014, Cox Enterprises brought all of its automotive-related businesses – including Manheim, Autotrader.com, Kelley Blue Book, vAuto and NextGear Capital – together under the newly created Cox Automotive subsidiary.
Cox Communications is the third-largest U.S. cable company, serving approximately 6 million residences and businesses. It provides advanced digital video, Internet, telephone and home security and automation services over its own nationwide IP network.
Cox Automotive is a provider of vehicle remarketing services and digital marketing and software for automotive dealers and consumers. Cox Automotive brands include Manheim, Clutch Technologies, Dealer-Auction Ltd, AutoTrader, Kelley Blue Book, vAuto, Dealer.com, Dealertrack, NextGear Capital, Xtime, Vinsolutions and a host of global businesses and brands serving auto dealers, manufacturers and financial institutions.
Cox Media Group
Cox Media Group (CMG) is an integrated broadcasting, publishing, direct marketing and digital media company.
In 2019 Cox Enterprises reached an agreement with Apollo Global Management to buy majority interest in Cox Media Group's broadcast television stations, including the company's radio, newspaper and TV properties in Ohio.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, in addition to the media agency Ideabar, will continue to be part of Cox Enterprises.
Cox Conserves is the company’s national sustainability program that focuses on alternative energy, community investment, employee engagement, energy conservation, waste diversion, recycling, and water conservation.
Cox Conserves’ primary focus areas include:
- Energy conservation
- Water conservation
- Waste diversion & recycling
- Community engagement
Investments & Innovation
In September 2019, Cox Automotive's Mobility Division entered into an agreement with Rivian, the company developing the first luxury all electric truck. In the deal, Cox will invest 350 million dollars into Rivian with the two companies exploring partnership opportunities in service operations, logistics, and digital retailing.
- "Cox Enterprises Inc. Financial Statements". Institute of Media and Communications Policy. September 17, 2012.
- "Three Cox Billionaires Minted as Matriarch Gives Away Wealth". Bloomberg. November 20, 2015.
- "Cox Enterprises Elects Alex Taylor and Jamie Kennedy to Board of Directors - Apr 22, 2014". Coxenterprises.mediaroom.com. April 22, 2014. Retrieved November 7, 2015.
- "Cox Enterprises Businesses".
- "Cox Automotive | Cox Enterprises".
- Media related to Cox Enterprises at Wikimedia Commons