Koch Brothers Among New Owners of 'Time Magazine'

Posted November 28, 2017

The US$18.50-a-share offer is an all-cash one, Meredith said in a statement on Sunday.

While Time Inc. kept stumbling over the years, Meredith grew from strength to strength, even buying local TV stations to help it stand strong against the assault on print media launched by fast-growing digital brands that more suitably address the needs of modern media consumption.

Rothschild & Co.'s renewed push in the U.S.is getting a boost from the Koch brothers.

On Sunday night Meredith Corp. concluded a sale agreement for an all-cash purchase of Time Inc. for almost $3 billion, backed by a $650 million infusion by billionaire brothers Charles G. and David H. Koch.

Media watchdogs have expressed concern over the potential influence of the Koch brothers on Time Inc.

The deal gives Meredith, publisher of Better Homes & Gardens, a larger audience at a time when publishers need to get bigger to compete with Facebook and Google in advertising. In the press release announcing the acquisition of Time, Meredith officials said the Koch brothers "will have no influence on Meredith's editorial or managerial operations".

The Koch brothers have spent decades building a network of wealthy political donors who pledge money to conservative causes and their advocacy groups. The deal is expected to close within the first quarter of 2018.

Once the two companies are merged, Meredith says they will serve almost 200 million consumers, with its digital media business reaching 170 million monthly unique visitors in the U.S. Meredith and Time Inc. made combined revenues of $4.8 billion in 2016, including $2.7 billion in total advertising revenue (with $700 million of that from digital advertising) and adjusted EBITDA of $800 million.

Time Inc. owns and publishes over a hundred magazines, including its namesake Time, in addition to other major publications such as People, Sports Illustrated, Entertainment Weekly and Fortune magazines.