Carlos Slim buys 6.4% of the NYT

Discussion in 'Wall St. News' started by hughb, Sep 11, 2008.

  1. hughb


    I wonder if these rich old geezers just don't get it, newspapers are on their way out. Or maybe they know something. I dunno. I suspect that they are so used to seeing themselves written about in newspapers that they just can't believe the rest of the world is moving on without them. Anyway, here's the story:

    Carlos Slim buys 6.4 percent of NY Times Co.
    38 minutes ago

    MEXICO CITY (AFP) — Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim said Thursday he had acquired a 6.4-percent stake in The New York Times Co., publisher of one of the most prestigious US dailies.

    Slim, the second wealthiest person in the world based on a ranking by Forbes magazine, confirmed the news through a spokesman for Telmex, the Mexican telecom giant he controls.

    "It is correct, Carlos Slim has bought a 6.4-percent stake in the New York Times," the spokesman told AFP.

    The disclosure was also in a regulatory filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday.

    Slim's spokesman said the stake was "a financial investment like many others by the Slim family," and that he had no intention of becoming involved in management of the newspaper group.

    With the move, Slim becomes the largest holder of Class A shares, which are in a separate category from those held by members of the controlling family of the company.

    Slim's fortune is estimated at 60 billion dollars, according to Forbes, and his activities represent around six percent of Mexico's gross domestic product.

    Like many newspaper firms, the Times Co. has been under pressure because of a loss of advertising revenues to the Internet. Shares of the company have lost 30 percent in the past year but were up 6.9 percent to 14.92 dollars on the latest news
  2. Daal


    boy are you guys going to hear about opening the borders now :p
  3. When investors buy foreign assets, it's usually a bearish sign. We'll see how it plays out.
  4. hugh,

    When you control the media, you can control content. This means that outlets like newspapers can help shape public opinion. Public opinion can then be used to profit.

    As an example of shaping public opinion for profit, look no further than the "Pickens Plan." Although Pickens doesn't own any newpspapers to my knowledge he is spending gobs of money advertising his "plan." He did not become a billionare by throwing away money by buying public service announcements. No, Pickens is betting that the public will buy into the message and get behind politicians who stand for "clean energy." This, in it's most basic form, means taking YOUR money (via taxation) and giving it to HIM (via subsidies for wind and natural gas ops). If Pickens is successful--and he probably will be--he'll siphon off billions of tax dollars to his companies regardless of the absurdity of converting our entire transportation system to natrual gas. (Oh, yes, you'll need to buy a new car for that).

    But I digress. The point was the motivation behind the trend of these elite billionaires buying media outlets like newspapers. No doubt you will see harsh criticism of illegal immigration in the NYT become a little rarer. I doubt Slim is doing this to improve the sports section.
  5. hughb


    I've seen Pickens' ads on television and he needs to go back to whatever acting school he came from and get a full refund.

    Slim's putting up a lot of money here. Whatever he's up to, it's bigger than getting migrant workers to use the Telmex network. He's buying stock in a dying company in a dying industry.
  6. hughb


    Print Back to story

    Reports: Carlos Slim may boost stake in NY Times
    Mon Jan 19, 2:45 am ET

    NEW YORK – The New York Times Co. is in talks with billionaire Carlos Slim Helu about a possible investment of hundreds of millions of dollars that could help the newspaper publisher to meet debt payments, according to published reports.

    The Wall Street Journal, citing anonymous sources, reported Saturday that no deal is set and that discussions between the paper and Slim, the owner of Mexico's telephone giant Telmex, could still collapse.

    The New York Times, also citing anonymous sources, reported in Monday's editions that Slim is close to a deal to invest about $250 million in the company. The company's board is expected to meet on Monday to approve the deal, with an announcement possible as early as Tuesday, the newspaper reported.

    A spokeswoman for The New York Times declined to comment Sunday.

    The Times has about $46 million in cash and $1.1 billion in debt as of the end of September, the Journal reported. A $400 million credit facility expires in May.

    In September, the financier and members of his family purchased 6.4 percent of the company's publicly traded shares. The value of the investment has dropped by half since then, the Journal said.

    Forbes last year named Slim was the world's second-richest man.

    The Ochs-Sulzberger family owns a controlling interest in the company through special voting shares. The hedge fund Harbinger Capital Partners holds a 19.9 percent stake in the company, which publishes its namesake paper, the Boston Globe and other properties.

    The Journal said one possible plan could involve issuing preferred stock. The stock wouldn't offer voting rights but would pay a dividend, the Journal said. This could allow the Ochs-Sulzberger family to retain control of the company. But preferred shares often can be converted to common stock after a certain period.

    The company is planning a special board meeting next week, the Journal said.

    The company has been trying to conserve cash. In November it slashed its quarterly dividend by 74 percent. And it has plans to raise $225 million from its new, 52-story Manhattan headquarters, either by selling the building and leasing it back or a mortgage. The company owns 58 percent of the building, a portion that has not yet been mortgaged.

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  7. hughb


    Now, I'm nowhere near as successful as Slim. I've made nowhere near the amount of money he has, I don't talk to anybody as important as he does, I'm not as connected as he is.

    But I don't give a shit, this is dumb. Carlos Slim is not bigger than the market, and the market says print media is dead, or if not dead, it will have to get used to it's new highly irrelevant role in today's world.

    I honestly believe these rich old codgers are out of touch when it comes to newspapers. They have been accustomed to seeing themselves in newspapers their whole lives and can't bring themselves to realize it's over.
  8. I haven't bought a newspaper in years. And I don't mean 2 years. I don't even remember the last paper I bought. Might have had something about Nixon resigning on the cover.


    Say Cheese Spiro
  9. S2007S


    I don't understand why anyone would invest in any newspaper company in 2009, there will not be a newspaper to buy in 2020, over the next decade newspapers, magazines and books will NOT exist.

    Everything will be in digital format.

    Say goodbye to borders books and barnes and nobles. Those will be a thing of the past.
  10. I've heard that for the last 15 years. Guess what? Hasn't happened, not even close. They also said digitizing everything will reduce paper consumption. Guess what? That hasn't happened, either. We consume more paper than ever.

    But I can't argue newspapers are dying or dead. Maybe investors are just interested in the brand name and will use their influence to change the company's business model into something a little more modern.
    #10     Jan 19, 2009