Major liberal papers and magazines are going at a discount these days. Newsweek was sold for a buck and turned out to be too expensive at that price. The Boston Globe has been sold at a mere 7 percent of its original $1.1 billion purchase price.
This nearly completes the dismantling of the New York Times’ abortive media empire. It’s still stuck with the ugliest skyscraper in the city as its HQ though.
The New York Times Co has agreed to sell The Boston Globe to the principal owner of the Boston Red Sox baseball team for $70 million in cash, a small fraction of what the Times paid for the newspaper 20 years ago.
Under the transaction announced Saturday, Red Sox owner John W. Henry got the Boston Globe for less than a tenth of what the New York Times paid when it bought the newspaper for $1.1 billion in 1993.
The sale also includes the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, which the New York times bought for about $300 million in 2000, as well as related digital properties of both papers, and a direct mail marketing company.
So that’s technically 1.4 billion worth of media properties sold for 70 million. Possibly more.
The New England properties were the last pieces of a once much bigger New York Times Co empire. The company has sold off everything – TV and radio assets, dozens of U.S. regional papers, digital companies, and its stakes in sports ventures – to focus solely on its flagship and international edition.
That’s called a retreat. The Times tried to be a media empire. Now it’s clinging to its core brand read by gullible yuppies.
“As a result of this agreement, we will be able to sharpen our company focus on and investments in The New York Times brand and its journalism.”
Don’t call it a retreat. It’s a strategic withdrawal.
Total revenue for the New England papers fell 7.4 percent in the second quarter to $94.4 million on declines in advertising and circulation revenue.
How long until the New York Times is on the block?