Marc Benioff, co-founder of Salesforce, buys Time magazine
Time Magazine is being sold by Meredith Corp. to Marc Benioff, a co-founder of Salesforce, and his wife, it was announced Sunday.
Meredith announced that it was selling Time magazine for $190 million in cash to Benioff, one of four co-founders of Salesforce, a cloud computing pioneer and an executive known for social activism. Benioff, for instance, has criticized laws that could permit anti-gay discrimination and has spent millions to close the gender pay gap at Salesforce.
Meredith had completed the purchase of Time along with other publications of Time Inc. earlier this year. The Benioffs are purchasing Time personally, and the transaction is unrelated to Salesforce.com, where Benioff is chairman and co-CEO and co-founder.
The purchase of Time by Benioff continues a trend of acquisitions of old-line media institutions by wealthy tech titans, such as the Washington Post’s purchase by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos in 2013 for $250 million. At the same time, many traditional print publications have suffered from a decline in advertising and subscriber revenue, prompting cutbacks in staff and other resources.
“The power of Time has always been in its unique storytelling of the people & issues that affect us all & connect us all,” Marc Benioff wrote on Twitter on Sunday. “A treasure trove of our history & culture. We have deep respect for their organization & honored to be stewards of this iconic brand.”
The power of Time has always been in its unique storytelling of the people & issues that affect us all & connect us all. A treasure trove of our history & culture. We have deep respect for their organization & honored to be stewards of this iconic brand. https://t.co/OLie13YJ58
The announcement by Meredith said that the Benioffs would not be involved in the day-to-day operations or journalistic decisions at Time. Those decisions will continue to be made by Time’s current executive leadership team, the announcement said.
“We’re pleased to have found such passionate buyers in Marc and Lynne Benioff for the Time brand,” Meredith president and CEO Tom Harty said in a statement. “For over 90 years, Time has been at the forefront of the most significant events and impactful stories that shape our global conversation.”
Meredith, the publisher of such magazines as People and Better Homes & Gardens, had put four Time Inc. publications up for sale in March. Negotiations for the sale of the three other publications — Fortune, Money and Sports Illustrated — are continuing.
Circulation at Time magazine has declined sharply, with the magazine cutting its circulation from by about 700,000 to 2.3 million for the six-month period ending June 30, The Wall Street Journal noted.
The prospective sale is expected to close within 30 days. In an interview with The Wall Street Journal, Benioff said he and his wife were investing “in a company with tremendous impact on the world, one that is also an incredibly strong business. That’s what we’re looking for when we invest as a family.”
Started by Yale University graduates Henry Luce and Briton Hadden, Time first went on sale in March 1923.
Source: Read Full Article