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XO Group (formerly The Knot Inc.) was an American media and technology company that provided content, tools, products and services for couples who were planning weddings, creating a home, and starting a family. The company generated revenue through online advertising, merchandising, registry services, and publishing. In 2019, the company merged with WeddingWire to become The Knot Worldwide under ownership of WeddingWire's investors. Its divisions remained intact, but the XO Group name has been retired.

XO Group
Traded asXOXO
SuccessorThe Knot Worldwide
FoundedMay 1996; 23 years ago (1996-05) (as The Knot Inc.)
FounderDavid Liu
Carley Roney
DefunctMarch 24, 2019 (2019-03-24) (Merged with WeddingWire)
Headquarters,
Number of employees
770 (2017)
Websitetheknotww.com

Contents

HistoryEdit

David Liu, his wife Carley Roney and their business partners, Rob Fassino, and Michael Wolfson founded The Knot Inc. in 1996.[1] They found that the internet could facilitate and reduce anxiety in the process of wedding planning between couples.[1] The startup received seed financing from AOL, the partners launched The Knot brand as a portal on AOL.[2] In 1997, TheKnot.com launched on the internet.[3]

The company launched an online gift registry in partnership with QVC and published its first book, The Knot Complete Guide to Weddings in the Real World.[4] In December 1999, the company raised $35 million in an initial public offering.[5]

On December 2, 2000, the company launched its own bridal magazine and went public. The Knot Weddings Magazine is published four times a year and is sold on newsstands.[6]

In 2001, The Knot Inc. acquired WeddingPages, Inc., a publisher of regional bridal magazines, to expand its magazine offerings to local markets. Today, The Knot publishes regional magazines in 17 markets in the US. Online, the company hosts wedding vendor listings in its online directories.

In 2004, the company launched a television series, Real Weddings from The Knot, on the Oxygen Network,[7] and in 2005 it launched a streaming online video channel, The Knot TV, that runs on TheKnot.com. In 2009, the company launched a wedding planning show, called The Knot LIVE, which streams in real time to TheKnot.com from its New York City headquarters once a week.

In April 2005, the company became listed on the NASDAQ Stock Market with the ticker symbol "KNOT."

The Nest brand launched in 2005 with a website, and a magazine followed in 2006.[8] The brand serves cohabitating couples and newlyweds with lifestyle content about home decor, finance, cooking, entertaining and relationships. The brand also has two books in print, The Nest Newlywed Handbook and The Nest Home Decor Handbook.

In 2005, The Knot created a CD of wedding music called "The Knot Collection of Ceremony & Wedding Music." The Company also partnered with American Express to offer a co-branded rewards card for The Knot and The Nest.

In 2006, the company acquired WeddingChannel.com which included its registry platform and helped to consolidate the bridal media industry.[9]

In 2008, the company launched TheBump.com to serve expectant and new parents.[10] The Bump Pregnancy Guides feature pregnancy-related content and local pregnancy and baby resources in a pocket-sized magazine distributed through OBGYN offices across the country.

The Knot celebrated its 20-millionth member milestone in June 2010. [11]

In June 2011, the company transferred its common stock listing to the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) with the symbol "XOXO".[12]

Mike Steib joined XO Group as president in July 2013 and assumed the role of CEO in March 2014.[13]

In October 2015, XO Group announced the acquisition of GigMasters, an online marketplace for event vendors, and a partnership with Jetaport, the discounted hotel room block booking service. [14]

In September 2018, XO Group announced that it would merge with competing wedding planning firm WeddingWire and become a privately held company under the control of WeddingWire investors Permira Funds and Spectrum Equity. [15] The merger became official in March 2019 and the new parent company was renamed to The Knot Worldwide. [16]

Products and servicesEdit

The Knot Worldwide publishes wedding planning, nesting, and baby related content on multiple media platforms.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Carley Roney and David Liu - Photo Essays". TIME. 2007-11-15. Retrieved 2010-03-25.
  2. ^ "Corner Office: David Liu and Carley Roney Tie the Knot | SUCCESS Magazine | What Achievers Read". SUCCESS Magazine. Retrieved 2010-03-25.
  3. ^ Roney, Carley (2007-11-15). "Something Old, Something New". TIME. Retrieved 2010-03-25.
  4. ^ "The Knot: Here Come The Brides". Businessweek.com. 2005-04-11. Archived from the original on January 4, 2010. Retrieved 2010-03-25.
  5. ^ Hass, Nancy (1999-12-05). "A NIGHT OUT WITH - Carley Roney - At the .com Wedding". NYTimes.com. Retrieved 2010-03-25.
  6. ^ "The Knot, Inc. Company Profile, Information, Business Description, History, Background Information on The Knot, Inc". www.referenceforbusiness.com. Retrieved 2018-01-26.
  7. ^ Tedeschi, Bob (2005-03-14). "Web Sites Try Offering TV Shows". The New York Times.
  8. ^ "The Nest - 50 Best Websites 2008". TIME. 2008-06-17. Retrieved 2010-03-25.
  9. ^ "The Knot And WeddingChannel: Just Married". Businessweek.com. Archived from the original on April 10, 2010. Retrieved 2010-03-25.
  10. ^ http://forums.thebump.com/profile/bumpmaydate=. Retrieved 2015-01-14. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  11. ^ Folio Mag. Johnson-Greene, Chandra "The Knot, WeddingChannel.com Reach the 20 Million Mark" Folio Mag" 22 June 2010. Retrieved 19 November 2015.
  12. ^ "The Knot Inc. Highlights Expanded Footprint with New Corporate Name, XO Group Inc". XO Group Inc. June 28, 2011. Archived from the original on January 30, 2013. Retrieved July 21, 2013.
  13. ^ Internet Retailer, Rueter, Thad. E-retailer XO Group hires a president from the U.S. arm of Vente-Privee, "Internet Retailer", 1 July 2013. Retrieved on 12 November 2015
  14. ^ Geomarketing.com. Chamberlain, Lauryn. "XO Group Expands Wedding Marketplace, Acquiring GigMasters" "Geomarketing.com" 6 October 2015. Retrieved on 30 November 2015.
  15. ^ Nypost.com. Reuters. "WeddingWire to merge with XO Group in $933M deal" "nypost.com" 25 September 2018. Retrieved on 9 April 2019.
  16. ^ businesswire.com. "The Knot and WeddingWire Announce New Combined Company—The Knot Worldwide—the Global Leader in the Wedding Industry" "businesswire.com" 14 March 2019. Retrieved on 9 April 2019.

External linksEdit