Meredith Corp. agrees to sell Time Magazine for $190M

Meredith Corp. agrees to sell Time Magazine for $190M
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Media giant Meredith Corporation has agreed to sell Time magazine for $190 million, The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday.

Marc Benioff, co-founder of the cloud computing company Salesforce.com, and his wife Lynne Benioff are purchasing the publication, they confirmed to the Journal. The proposed sale to the Benioffs is expected to close within 30 days and will be unrelated to Salesforce.com.

They also told the newspaper that they won’t have any day-to-day influence over the magazine’s operations, nor will they have any journalistic input.

“We’re investing in a company with tremendous impact on the world, one that is also an incredibly strong business. That’s what we’re looking for when we invest as a family,” Marc Benioff told the newspaper.

He added that Time is the only magazine they are planning to purchase from Meredith.

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The couple will be taking over Time amid a turbulent time for print publications.

Print advertising is on the decline and Time cut circulation from 3 million to 2.3 million earlier this year, according to the Alliance for Audited Media.

However, the Benioffs said they’re hopeful given Time’s large audience and expanded online presence.

Time.com had 31.7 million multiplatform, unique visitors in July 2018, a hike from the 27.4 million who visited its platforms during the same period in 2015, according to media measurement firm comScore Inc.

“The power of Time has always been in its unique storytelling of the people and issues that affect us all and connect us all,”  Lynn Benioff said.

The deal comes roughly eight months after Meredith Corp., a publisher with ties to GOP mega-donor Charles Koch, purchased Time Inc. for $1.8 billion.

Time Magazine was one of four publications that Meredith put up for sale earlier this year, including Fortune, Money and Sports Illustrated.

“For over 90 years, TIME has been at the forefront of the most significant events and impactful stories that shape our global conversation,” said Tom Harty, Meredith’s chief executive, in a statement. “We know TIME will continue to succeed and is in good hands with the Benioffs.”