By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Not the only potential buyers

As I wrote yesterday, all sorts of possible buyers of the Boston Globe would surface now that Jack Welch, Jack Connors and company had made their interest known. Well, check this out from today’s Wall Street Journal:

Other potential buyers have been sniffing around the Globe this year as its financial troubles have mounted….

Ben Taylor, the former Globe publisher whose family sold the Globe to the New York Times, has long been unhappy with the performance of the business and has talked about wanting to buy it back, according to a person close to the situation. Mr. Taylor didn’t return a call for comment.

Private equity firms such as Providence Equity Partners, Bain Capital and Blackstone Group have been eyeing the paper as a possible target, although it is unclear if they have reached out to the Taylors, according to a private equity executive.

The Globe today publishes a correction — in fact, the New York Times Co. has not denied that it would sell the Globe. Instead, the company has said nothing one way or the other.

Meanwhile, the Times itself reports that Welch has talked with Boston Herald publisher Pat Purcell about being a possible partner in the Globe deal.

This is going to get very interesting.

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  1. BJ Roche

    Hey Dan, Reading the WSJ article detailing the meetings of Mr. Connors, Mr. Welch, Mr. Barnicle–I was reminded of that line in “Citizen Kane”: “He thinks it would be fun to own a newspaper… FUN to own a newspaper!”Hard to believe these guys would be happy with 8-9 percent profit and a hands-off philosophy. What about the large pension funds? Maybe Fidelity could come up with an investment for people who don’t mind a lower dividend in exchange for a free and flourishing press. Sort of the newspaper equivalent of social investing.

  2. mike_b1

    Practically every business story could say Providence Equity Partners, Bain Capital and Blackstone Group are eyeing any given company. It’s as much a given as the byline.

  3. Anonymous

    you know, there’s an unseen side to consider here if joe o’donnell is part of the globe pursuit group. anyone who sees this as only a globe purchase has a myopic view.o’donnell was one of the final players in pursuit of the sox from the yawkey trust but got screwed when harrington gave aramark a lengthy contract for concessions, thus icing out o’donnell’s boston sports concessions and his reason to buy the sox.what if, as part of the pitch to buy the globe, the group wants the times to throw in their stake in the sox? they get the profit from nesn and o’donnell’s in the mix for fenway concessions once again and be a part owner of the sox.the globe bottom line is not the only bottom line here so if you broaden your view, this deal could make serious sense on many levels — print, entertainment, internet, cable television — beyond print profit margin.

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