Joe Marchese’s Attention Capital Is Acquiring Sophia Amoruso’s Girlboss

The latter CEO is confident the brand is in good hands

Joe Marchese (l.), co-founder and CEO of Attention Capital and Sophia Amoruso (r.), founder and CEO of Girlboss Media, have known each other for 6 years. - Credit by Getty Images, Girlboss
Headshot of Mónica Marie Zorrilla

Attention Capital, Joe Marchese’s fledgeling investment firm, has acquired Girlboss Media, a ubiquitous name in the women’s media space that is inextricably linked to its founder and CEO, Sophia Amoruso.

Amoruso will remain in her position along with the rest of the Girlboss leadership team, and there will be no job cuts as a result of the acquisition. In fact, there will be new job opportunities at the company. Girlboss plans to hire in experiential, product and technology, and for the sales and partnerships teams. Girlboss’ headquarters will also remain in Silver Lake, Calif.

The goal of the purchase is to exponentially amplify the brand’s values, voice and overall reach across multiple online and experiential platforms, such as the Girlboss Rally, a millennial women’s empowerment conference that drew attendees from across the U.S. and over 30 countries in 2019.

Though Attention Capital just launched in August, the investment firm is made up of a leadership team with prior experience in growing platforms for a number of major media brands such as National Geographic, Sports Illustrated, Fortune, Barstool Sports and Vice.

The team is headed by Marchese, the former president of advertising revenue for Fox Networks and founding partner of Human Ventures, and co-founders Nick Bell, the former vp of content at Snap Inc., and Ashlyn Gentry, a former svp at Palantir. In November, Brendan Ripp, former evp of corporate partnerships at Disney Advertising Sales, joined Attention Capital to lead its revenue strategy.

The Attention Capital team will work alongside Amoruso and the Girlboss team to support revenue growth and expand the brand’s business, particularly through the development of new platforms, products and global events.

Currently, Girlboss Media’s cross-platform presence includes a professional network commonly referred to as “the LinkedIn for women,” a podcast network that has garnered more than 21 million downloads, an Instagram account with 1.4 million followers and experiential activations such as local workshops. All of the media elements that comprise the Girlboss brand have a mission of providing connections, tools and resources for entrepreneurial women.

Amoruso said Attention Capital has been on her radar since before the investment firm’s inception. Once Marchese heard word that Amoruso was raising money for Girlboss, the two discussed a deeper partnership.

“I’ve known [Marchese] for six years now,” Amoruso told Adweek. “He’s an incredible advisor and friend, so there’s a long-standing relationship and a lot of good will between me and Attention.”

Amoruso firmly believes in Attention Capital’s driving principle, which she summed up as “[engaging] audiences and communities in ways that are much deeper than what has worked in the past in the world of monoculture and clickbait on social platforms and content platforms.”

In other words: to work with top media brands that properly measure their audiences, instead of chasing meaningless metrics that are borne from bots and click fraud.

“What we’re building is a lot sticker and has deeper engagement, and that is something that Attention is building across their entire portfolio of businesses,” Amoruso said.

Gentry echoed Amoruso’s sentiment in a statement, saying the “loyalty and passion” the brand has captured to form the global Girlboss community is a “massive market opportunity.”


@monicroqueta monica.zorrilla@adweek.com Mónica is a breaking news reporter at Adweek.
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