Must Read Stuff From Eric Rhoads

Why Jeff Bezos Will Revitalize Newspapers A message from Radio Ink Publisher Eric Rhoads   $250 million. That’s all Amazon CEO Jeffrey Bezos paid for the Washington Post, which was once worth several billion dollars. $70 million. That’s all John Henry paid on Friday for the Boston Globe, a paper the New York Times acquired for $1.1 billion in 1993. Next to nothing. That’s what IBT Media paid to buy Newsweek over the weekend from IAC, which itself had paid only $1 plus $40 million in pension obligations to buy it two years ago. Some billionaires like cars, yachts and private jets. Others like newspapers. Figuring the math, it’s hard to justify even a $250 million valuation for the Post. The company reported that it lost nearly $50 million for the first half of the year on newspaper operations that generated $138.4 million in revenue. Of that $50 million loss, nearly $40 million was in non-cash pension expense. So you could argue that the company lost only $10 million on operations. But it lost $33 million in the first half of 2012, too, also including pension costs. Circulation fell about 7 percent in the first half of 2013. At the end of last year, the company valued its newspaper assets at $293.6 million. That turned out to be too optimistic. Listening to the Bezos buzz has been fun following...

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