BY CATE CORCORAN AND ROBERT POZARYCKI
Schneps Communications, which publishes QNS and The Queens Courier, Courier Sun, Ridgewood Times and Times Newsweekly, announced Thursday that it acquired the Brooklyn-based Brownstoner, a website dedicated to real estate and business news.
The acquisition marks Schneps Communications’ latest expansion into Brooklyn. Last year, it acquired Brokelyn, a lifestyle and entertainment blog geared toward Brooklyn residents living on a budget. Schneps Communications also publishes the Home Reporter and Brooklyn Spectator, which it acquired in 2011, and Brooklyn Reporter.
“Together we now offer the biggest reach of any media company in Brooklyn,” said Joshua Schneps, owner, co-publisher and chief executive officer of the family firm, one of the largest publishers in Brooklyn and Queens, and Brownstoner’s new publisher.
The acquisition of Brownstoner will also bring some benefits to QNS users. In the weeks to come, QNS and other digital platforms owned by Schneps Communications will begin utilizing Brownstoner’s technology, such as with the introduction of real estate and business services directories. These directories, which will be located on the home page, enable users to find and search for properties that are on the market across Queens, or find a home improvement professional.
Schneps Communications and Brownstoner have a lot in common: Both were founded with a passion to improve their communities.
“Our goal is always to invest in quality content,” said Schneps. “We’re excited to be the new publishers of a premier website and media brand with excellent content, user engagement and terrific relationships in Brooklyn. I don’t know if there’s ever been a more exciting time in Brooklyn real estate.”
The acquisition includes Brownstoner editorial and advertising. The digital media agency aspect of Brownstoner offers clients digital marketing expertise, content creation and targeted reach online and through social media channels.
“We have been working with Josh and the Schneps team for several years,” said Kael Goodman, founder and chief executive officer of digital marketing agency BlankSlate, which acquired Brownstoner in 2015. “We helped Schneps with the acquisition of Brokelyn and now we are thrilled to be able to put Brownstoner in Schneps’ hands too.”
BlankSlate will provide web development and license its real estate and local marketing solutions to Schneps for Brownstoner and its other publications. Cate Corcoran will continue to lead Brownstoner’s content team and Brad Einhorn will continue to lead sales.
“I have great respect for the strategy Kael pursued. He created superior technology, built talented sales and content teams, and expanded Brownstoner’s reach by focusing on social media channels,” said Schneps.
Schneps Communications is the largest privately owned publisher of community newspapers, magazines, local websites and events serving Queens, Brooklyn, Staten Island and Long Island. Its 35 events include the Best of Brooklyn Food and Beer Festival and Star Network business events such as Brooklyn Power Women in Business and the Brooklyn Real Estate Conference.
Schneps was founded by Victoria Schneps-Yunis, the company’s publisher and Schneps’ mother and business partner. Inspired by the power of the press during her advocacy work on behalf of her daughter with special needs, Schneps-Yunis pursued her dream of being in the news business. She started neighborhood newspaper The Queens Courier in 1985 in her Bayside living room with a partner and a $250 investment.
Launched in 2004 during a new wave of real estate investment and construction in Brooklyn, Brownstoner chronicles change in Brooklyn through the lens of real estate and renovation. Brownstoner also hosts real estate listings, a community forum for connecting with neighbors, and a directory of home improvement professionals.