SOURCE: NBC News
Fortune magazine sold for second time this year — for $150 million in cash – ODP’s Reed Phillips Quoted
Parent company Meredith has “found some very unexpected buyers,” said one industry analyst.
Meredith said on Friday it has an agreement to sell Fortune magazine to Thailand-based entrepreneur Chatchaval Jiaravanon, who is using his personal money to acquire the storied brand for $150 million.
Jiaravanon is the second wealthy individual to come to the rescue of a well-known American title. In September, media conglomerate Meredith sold Time magazine to Silicon Valley’s Marc Benioff, the founder of Salesforce, for $190 million.
“Meredith got a tremendous price, much higher than originally expected,” said Reed Phillips, managing director at Oaklins DeSilva & Phillips, an investment bank focused on the media business. “Their patience has paid off. They’ve found some very unexpected buyers for Time and Fortune.”
Founded just after the Great Depression, Fortune is one of a string of financial media entities owned by a foreign company. The Financial Times was acquired by Japan’s Nikkei in 2015 for $1.3 billion, while Business Insider was bought the same year for $450 million, by German media company Axel Springer.
Jiaravanon, a California-educated executive with almost no profile in the U.S. media business, is the executive chairman of Charoen Pokphand Group, Thailand’s largest private company, with business interests ranging from telecommunications to 7-Eleven stores to meat processing.
“The demand for high-quality business information is growing, and with further committed investment in technology and brilliant journalism, we believe the outlook for further profitable growth is excellent both for the publication,” said Jiaravanon in a statement.