Summary:

Now too big to be run by just its small team, the LeWeb tech conference sells to specialist events giant Reed Midem as it plans more international events in the future.

Seesmic CEO Loic Le Meur

In its eight years’ operation, the LeWeb conference has been known for many things — a spectacular falling out with TechCrunch, chilly halls and, latterly, as “Europe’s most established tech conference“.

Now the event organizer Reed Midem — whose own website is down at time of writing — is acquiring the event from husband-and-wife pair Loïc and Geraldine Le Meur.

Reed Midem president Paul Zilk says (via announcement):

“There are obvious affinities between LeWeb and Reed Midem. We share the ambition to develop international events of the highest quality that give participants the opportunity to discover the latest innovations, expand their business networks, raise funds, build partnerships and launch new products.”

Reed Midem is operated by Anglo-Dutch science and medical publisher Reed Elsevier and its event event portfolio includes the Mipcom and Midem conflabs for the TV and music industries in Cannes, New York Comic Con and World Travel Market.

Loïc Le Meur, who remains a LeWeb shareholder, founded and sold a couple of companies in France in the early 2000s, one of them to Movable Type operator Six Apart, where he served as EVP before dramatically relocating to San Francisco to work on his own startup, Seesmic.

Initially launched as a video communication platform, the service went through several pivots, including as a Twitter client, before Hootsuite acquired its users this September. All the while, the Le Meurs have kept running a conference that has steadily become more influential and more well attended, with 3,500 turning out at last week’s event in Paris. Now LeWeb is large and recognised enough to tick the vacant “technology” box in Reed Midem’s line-up.

Loïc blogs: “We want to keep the growth going, being in more places and more countries. We needed a partner that could help us do this. We will run (the events) with our team without major changes but with help from Reed Midem. We are working with Reed Midem on possible new developments.”

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