Planet Out, has sold The Advocate and a number of other publications to Regent Media, the owners of Gaywired and here! tv.

Regent Media has completed the acquisition of PlanetOut’s publishing properties including The Advocate and Out, the world’s leading LGBT fashion and style source. Additionally, Regent Media purchased The Out Traveler, the world’s leading LGBT travel source, and Alyson Books, the world’s leading LGBT book publisher.

Nasdaq quoted PlanetOut is best known as the owner of gay.com, and the company has been plagued by under performing publications and a disastrous investment in a cruise ship.

In May 2007 high operating costs and declining sales resulted in a considerable first-quarter loss and a resulting slide in share price. Then two months later, a company that invests the wealth of Microsoft founder Bill Gates purchased a major stake in PlanetOut.

Cascade Investments LLC joined with a number of other private equity vehicles to fund a rescue buyout of PlanetOut stock.

That same month the company closed its London and Buenos Aires offices as part of a streamlining of business operations designed to reduce costs making 273 staff were made redundant.

Advocate.com has performed badly in recent months, regularly overtaken in global readers by PinkNews.co.uk according to internet statistics firm Alexa. Data from Hitwise shows that in the UK, PinkNews.co.uk is read by four times as many people as Advocate.com.

“Regent Media now owns the best-known and most respected brands in the gay and lesbian marketplace. Our brands signify the highest quality content for the LGBT community via television, magazines, books and the web,”‘ said Stephen P Jarchow and Paul Colichman, Chairman and President of Regent Media “These seminal properties will continue to document and to enrich the culture and history of our nation.”

The Regent Media brands now include: here! Networks, heretv.com, here! Films, here! Home Entertainment, here! Tunes, The Advocate, advocate.com, Out, out.com, The Out Traveler, outtraveler.com, HIV Plus, hivplusmag.com, Alyson Books, alyson.com and Gaywired Media, which is a partner of PinkNews.co.uk

As part of the ongoing re-launch of advocate.com, The Advocate news team will cover the Democratic National Convention (DNC) with its inaugural video news broadcasts. Advocate.com’s DNC news team includes veteran broadcast journalist James Hattori, as well as The Advocate news editors Kerry Eleveld and Sean Kennedy. Hattori is best known for his work as a senior correspondent with CBS, NBC and CNN.

“Advocate.com will proudly provide a unique perspective on the events of the DNC,”‘ said Jon Barrett, Editor in Chief of The Advocate and advocate.com. “No other organization can serve our community with such an extraordinary level of resources and experience. Simply put, we are the best team in gay news.”

Colichman and Jarchow jointly supervise the various divisions of Regent Media. Through their companies they have produced such films as the Academy Award-winning Gods & Monsters and Academy Award-nominated Tom & Viv. Their original television series include the entire here! production slate: Dante’s Cove, Paradise Falls, The Lair, The Donald Strachey Mysteries, The DL Chronicles and the annual Ribbon of Hope Celebration.