The rumoured merger of Newsweek and IAC’s online pub The Daily Beast feels like “a done deal,” a source close to Newsweek tells us.
A source familiar with IAC’s M&A strategy says that “sounds right.”
“Barry Diller is always interested in ‘making more value’ by spinning his properties into other stuff. He and VK are basically financial engineers. They see properties as poker chips.”
Meanwhile, people at the Daily Beast are peppering their bosses with questions about the deal.
In a meeting today, top editor Ed Felsenthal told staffers he wouldn’t answer questions about the deal – “which everyone took to mean that it’s going to happen.”
A source familiar with the talks tells us discussion between the companies restarted in the last week.
But “there are still a lot of hurdles,” our source cautioned, mentioning equity negotiations and editorial roles.
The source close to Newsweek tells us people there worry that “they’re already making lists of who will stay and who will get laid off” and that “most of the cuts will come from Newsweek.”
The talk among the staffers is that “it’s basically going to be a takeover of Newsweek, with Tina in charge – her team running things.”
“Which is kind of staggering considering that DB is such a completely shitty business, financially speaking.”
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