Norm Pearlstine, former top editor at the Wall Street Journal and Time Inc., is leaving private equity to re-enter the media business. Pearlstine, a partner at buyout firm Carlyle Group for the past two years, is joining Bloomberg L.P. as “chief content officer”, a new position. He’ll be charged with seeking “growth opportunities for its television, radio, magazine and online products.”
Pearlstine will report to Bloomberg president and former mayoral aide Dan Doctoroff, who describes the role as a partnership with Bloomberg editor-in-chief Matthew Winkler. Both will report to Doctoroff. In a statement, Doctoroff said “he and Mat Winkler, working side by side, will be one of the most powerful teams in journalism.”
Last week Pearlstine gave a scathing assessment of newspapers as a business, but showed some quick familiarity with Bloomberg (2400 journalists produce 5k stories a day), and held it out as an example of a sustainable model for journalism. Funny how that worked out.
“Bloomberg is not making money from its news products; they are all subsidized, but [Bloomberg] sees news as essential to the brand,” he said.