– Washington Post finalizes $250 million sale to Bezos (USA Today, Oct 1, 2013):
Washington Post finalizes $250 million sale to Bezos, a deal that was announced in August.
The Washington Post now fully belongs to billionaire Jeff Bezos.
The Washington Post Co., which had owned the paper, said Tuesday that it has finalized selling that part of the company to the founder and chairman of Amazon.com, a deal that was announced in early August and shocked the media industry.
In paying $250 million in cash for the paper, Bezos gains control of the fabled but struggling publication that had been controlled by four generations of the Graham family.
Bezos, who’s buying the paper individually, also picks up other properties in the Washington region, including the Express newspaper, The Gazette newspapers, Southern Maryland Newspapers, Fairfax County Times and El Tiempo Latino.
Slate magazine, The Root and Foreign Policy are not part of the deal and will remain with The Washington Post Co.
The Washington Post Co., which also owns the Kaplan education unit, a cable service provider and TV stations, will change its name.
Katharine Weymouth, the paper’s publisher and the niece of Washington Post CEO Don Graham, will stay in her job at the paper.
Shares of the company rose 2.8% on Tuesday to end at $628.54.
Revenue of The Washington Post Co.’s newspaper publishing division fell 2% in the first six months of the year from the year-earlier period to $265.7 million.
Print advertising revenue fell 6%. Average daily circulation at The Washington Post during the period totaled 447,700.
“Everyone at the Post Co. and everyone in our family has always been proud of The Washington Post — of the newspaper we publish and of the people who write and produce it,” Graham said at the time of the announcement in August. “I, along with Katharine Weymouth and our board of directors, decided to sell only after years of familiar newspaper-industry challenges made us wonder if there might be another owner who would be better for the Post. Jeff Bezos’ proven technology and business genius, his long-term approach and his personal decency make him a uniquely good new owner for the Post.”