Getty Takes Over Operation of Lonely Planet

Posted on 4/26/2012 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (2)

Getty Images will become the sole global distributor for Lonely Planet’s 420,000+ travel images as of July of this year. The collection from approximately 370 photographers has been built up over the last 14 years.

In a letter to its customers Lonely Planet said that all agreements with image partners and libraries as well as “special contractual relationships with direct customers” would be terminated in July. Licenses issued prior to that time will be valid for the assigned period. The transition to Getty Images is expected to occur over several months.
Lonely Planet was founded in Australia in 1973 and Lonely Planet Images was established in 1998. In October 2007, BBC Worldwide acquired a 75% stake in Lonely Planet for £88.1 million and in February 2011 acquired the remaining 25% for an additional £42.1 million.

The photography division has always been a small part of the company’s business and given the dramatic changes in the image licensing business in the past decade the BBC has decided that it is time to turn the photography division over to someone with greater expertise in that market.

Andy Saunders, senior vice president, creative content at Getty Images said, "We have represented a small portion of Lonely Planet's content for a number of years and so we are delighted to announce this new and expanded partnership. Lonely Planet Images contains some of the best travel content from across the world, shot by a high caliber of photographers. Complementing our creative offering, these images will continue to provide our customers with access to an even broader range of international and local travel content - at a time when it can be costly for media to invest in shooting this type of content themselves."

Stephen Palmer, managing director, publishing at Lonely Planet said: "Getty Images - as one of the world's leading image libraries - is the ideal representative for Lonely Planet's much-loved image collection in an increasingly consolidated global image market. As a publisher, this new arrangement will allow us to continue to use images from our collection under the Lonely Planet brand and now the best of what Getty Images has to offer as our preferred supplier."

Copyright © 2012 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

Jim Pickerell is founder of, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to:  


  • Jen Morgan Posted Apr 26, 2012

  • Jen Morgan Posted Apr 26, 2012

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