Photo: New York Post
After Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. announced that its iPad news app, The Daily, would be closed down, the company shuffled its management ranks.The Daily’s editor-in-chief, Jesse Angelo, will become the new publisher of The New York Post, according to Bloomberg. And the former publisher, Paul Carlucci, will go back to being the CEO of News America Marketing, the company’s grocery coupon division. (He previously held both posts simultaneously).
At first glance, the moves don’t make sense: Angelo gets a promotion even though his publication failed? And why must Carlucci take a step back?
But it all falls into place once you know the history. Carlucci’s ascent within News was accompanied by controversy and huge financial losses. Angelo, by contrast, is respected by News staff, especially on the editorial side.
Infamously, Carlucci was CEO of News America during a period when the company lost three separate pieces of litigation against competitors accusing News America of antitrust activity intended to unlawfully drive competitors out of the newspaper coupon business. Those lawsuits — filed by Valassis, Insignia Systems and Floorgraphics Inc. — cost News Corp. $656 million in total.
The settlements were won after juries heard that Carlucci had called a mafia-style lunch with the CEO of a competitor to tell him, “I will destroy you!“
He also once accused his own staff of being “bed wetting liberals,” according to court testimony.
Most bizarrely, he once tried to motivate his salesforce by showing them a video of the scene from The Untouchables in which Robert De Niro’s Al Capone beats a colleague to death with a baseball bat, according to a lawsuit filed against his company, which News America settled.
The settlements in the cases cost News the equivalent of its entire profits from the movie Avatar.
And, during Carlucci’s reign as ad sales boss at The Post, the newspaper has reportedly lost as much as $70 million a year.
Given the history, it’s not surprising that Carlucci’s duties are being reduced.
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