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Rumors That The New York Times May Take The Company Private

The New York Observer's Gabriel Sherman explores the buzz--and creates some in the process--over the prospect that the New York Times Company might take itself private.  It would be a huge, complex, and expensive proposition, writes Sherman, but now might be the ideal time to make the move.  He cites a Times insider as saying, "In terms of going private, they'd be buying at a good share price. If you are ever going to go private, the stock has never been lower."  On the other hand, the Sulzberger family's controlling stake in the media company is structured in a way that makes it very unlikely the The Times would ever go private.  Too, a restructuing of company would probably mean it would need to raise capital by selling off The Boston Globe, one of its prize assets.  The Observer's Sherman concludes that, when all is said and done, Times staffers would rather that their flagship paper remain in the hands of the Sulzbergers: "Whatever doubts Times staff may have about their newly shorn, sometimes-artless boss [Arthur Sulzberger Jr.], some would prefer... family control to the uncertainties of market demands--particularly at a time of brutal industry-wide cost-cutting."






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