Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Lonely Planet leaves Oz

Big news in the travel guidebook world this week: Lonely Planet has been sold!

Those who've followed this blog over the years will know that after being a massive Lonely Planet addict throughout my 20s, and using their guidebooks to travel on five different continents, I'd developed a bit of a love-hate relationship with LP ever since things started getting really commercialised. As soon as 5-star hotels started appearing in the accommodation sections, I felt like things weren't changing for the better.

But nonetheless, I've always been proud that such a high-quality, highly-recognised guidebook brand could have come out of Australia. But now a 75% stake in LP has been sold to BBC Worldwide (that's the commercial arm of the BBC). Of all the potential buyers, this one does sound like it has the most potential to continue the Lonely Planet brand in a somewhat similar way to now, so I'm not too disappointed, really. But I will be keeping a close eye on things.


  1. This information staggers me! I can't remember hearing about it!

    So where does the co-founder Tony wheeler fit into the scheme of things now?

    I have been recently following his blog ~ since Australia Day. Must see if I can find a comment!


  2. At the time he made a wishy-washy statement here http://www.lonelyplanet.com/blogs/community/entry/a_message_from_tony_maureen which basically just said what a good thing the sale was. Haven't heard much about it since - but I thought Lonely Planet had been heading away from the Wheelers for years anyway, getting much more commercial. Still have some good stuff, though.


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