Meredith seals $1.85B deal for Time Inc

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That deal would come at about $2B, and (as reported) be backed by the conservative billionaire Koch brothers coming in with some $600M in financing.

"We are creating a premiere media company serving almost 200 million American consumers across industry-leading digital, television, print, video, mobile and social platforms positioned for growth", Meredith chief executive Stephen Lacy said in a statement announcing the deal.

Meredith made an unsuccessful bid for Time in 2013.

In addition to Time Magazine, publications Time Inc. owns include Sports Illustrated, People, and Fortune.

Meredith's portfolio includes 17 local television stations in 12 United States markets, as well as publications such as Better Homes & Gardens, Allrecipes, Parents and Shape.

David Koch is one of the backers along with his brother Charles of a US$2 billion bid for Time
CARLO ALLEGRI David Koch is one of the backers along with his brother Charles of a US$2 billion bid for Time

Time Inc was spun off from media and entertainment giant Time Warner, which was seeking to shed its journalism assets.

"This all-cash transaction, and the immediate, certain value it provides, is in the best interests of the company and its shareholders", Time's Chairman John Fahey said in a statement. Time shares jumped 2% in after-hours trading Sunday, and Meredith rose 1.3%.

The transaction will create a company with combined revenues of $4.8 billion for 2016, including $2.7 billion of total advertising revenues with almost $700 million of digital advertising revenues. Like other media companies, Time is focusing on moving from a print focus to a multimedia approach.

The deal marks the latest move in the consolidation-minded magazine business, whose owners are seeking scale as they attempt to combat diminished print readership and advertisers. However, acquiring Time Inc with the help of the Koch brothers will give their media group access to a total readership of over 130 million and a subscription circulation of close to 60 million, per Reuters. Meredith said today it agreed to pay $18.50 per share for all outstanding shares of Time Inc. It has traded between $9.90 and $20.40 a share over the past 52 weeks.

President Trump tweeted last week he wasn't interested in being named Time magazine's Person of the Year for the second straight year. Time magazine responded on its own account that Trump didn't understand the selection process and several comics offered their own mocking tweets as well.

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