Keith Kelly of the NYP with an update on the BusinessWeek sale:
Nine companies are said to be in the hunt, including TV Guide owner OpenGate Capital, investment company Warburg Pincus, New York magazine owner Bruce Wasserstein, Fast Company owner Joe Mansueto and private-equity shop and Boston Globe suitor Platinum Equity Partners…
Observers say Wasserstein is emerging as a front-runner for the title, even though the magazine assets he owns are currently struggling in a tough ad climate.
Wasserstein owns New York magazine through a family trust and his US Equity Partners owns The Deal, a business trade pub. Meanwhile, he also holds a major stake in Penton Media.
To be sure, there is no guarantee Wasserstein will step up and buy the magazine.
After spending $65 million in 2004 for New York and burning through several million ever since, sources said he might only buy BusinessWeek if he can be convinced the title could regain some of its former glory.
That might include getting as close to the $100 million in profits it generated a decade ago. Today, BusinessWeek is losing tens of millions of dollars.
BusinessWeek generate $100 million of profits? In Bruce’s dreams.
Whoever the buyer is will likely have to cut costs in half. Even after doing that, profits will likely be a fraction of those of a decade ago.
BusinessWeek staffers, meanwhile, are said to be dreading the sale, as it will likely lead to mass layoffs.
Read Keith’s whole update here >
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