The Barclay brothers denied trying to sell The Telegraph newspaper to Jeff Bezos

  • British satirical and current affairs magazine Private Eye reported on Wednesday that Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos looked into buying the publisher behind The Daily Telegraph newspaper, and that he was given a price tag of $US900 million.
  • A spokesman for the Barclay brothers categorically denied the story to Business Insider, saying the group is not for sale and it never has been.
  • In recent years the media has reported that multiple buyers have expressed an interest in the group, but have been rebuffed.

The owners of a British newspaper group have denied trying to sell it to Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos.

British current affairs magazine Private Eye reported on Wednesday that Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos had expressed an interest in buying the Telegraph group, and that its owners the Fred and David Barclay had floated a price tag of £700 million ($US900 million). The group publishes The Daily Telegraph, The Sunday Telegraph, and the accompanying website.

A spokesman for the brothers denied the story.

The Eye reported that Bezos walked away thanks to the price tag and the group’s financial struggles.

“Perhaps they thought he’s worth so much that he’ll pay anything,” a Telegraph source told the Eye. Bezos already owns the Washington Post, which he bought in 2013 for $US250 million. He was also an investor in Business Insider at one time.

A spokesman for the Barclay brothers told Business Insider: “The Telegraph Media Group is not for sale and never has been.”

Rumours about various millionaires (and in Bezos’s case a billionaire) buying the titles have cropped up before. In 2016Russian entrepreneur Evgeny Lebedev, owner of the Evening Standard and Independent newspapers, tried to buy the group. He was rebuffed however and the Barclay brothers insisted at the time that the group was not for sale.

Amazon declined to comment when contacted by Business Insider.

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