by Chuck Colbert
Gay Star News Ltd., an international online news service based in London, announced this month that Lord John Browne of Madingley has become a shareholder in the business, taking a 12.5 percent stake. Brown is the former CEO of BP (British Petroleum), one of the world"s largest gas and oil companies. He made international headlines in 2007 when he resigned from BP after a London tabloid outed him as gay.
Gay Star News (www.gaystarnews.com) is a global LGBT website offering the latest news as well as commentary, features and wide-ranging lifestyle coverage.
Seven years after his resignation as CEO of BP, Lord Browne wrote “The Glass Closet: Coming Out is Good Business” (http://www.glasscloset.org), a book about the acceptance and inclusion of LGBT people in business. The book urges LGBT people in the workplace — including senior executives — to come out in order to improve their lives and the lives of their co-workers as well as to improve the bottom line.
Browne has since become a high profile advocate for greater openness in the corporate world.
"When I wrote ‘The Glass Closet,’ I always hoped that it would grow into something more than just a book," he said in a press statement. “Gay Star News provides the perfect platform for that growth. I am looking forward to bringing the messages of ‘The Glass Closet’ to a wider audience, supporting Gay Star News in its next phase of development, and improving the environment for LGBT people in business around the world."
Tris Reid Smith, editor and co-founder of Gay Star News, added, "I am immensely proud we have a business leader of the international standing of Lord Browne joining our team of shareholders. This is a milestone in the development of Gay Star News — coming after a January in which we celebrated our third anniversary and saw over 5 million readers visit the site. Lord Browne’s involvement will help us offer even more to readers, clients and stakeholders."
Gay Stars News is read in countries around the world. Its largest audiences are in the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and Germany.
Gay Star News employs 18 staff and freelancers who are based around the world, with locations including London, New York, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Singapore and Sydney.
Lord Browne’s investment in Gay Star News is part of the media organization’s long-term plan to add expansive LGBT business coverage to their editorial mix.
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