Meredith to buy Time for $3.8b in all-cash transaction

Javier Howell
November 28, 2017

Meredith has attempted to purchase Time before in 2013, but that was unsuccessful.

The magazines now published by Meredith are not highly circulated, as their current line-up includes niche publications such as Better Homes and Gardens, Every Day with Rachael Ray, and Traditional Home.

Meredith Corp agreed to acquire Time Inc for US$2.8 billion (S$3.8 billion) including debt, swallowing the once-mighty home of Fortune and Sports Illustrated after the Internet age wreaked havoc on even the most prestigious magazine titles.

The deal is valued at $1.84 billion based on the offering price and number of shares of Time outstanding on September 30.

Rothschild also worked with Solera Holdings a deal previous year in which the Koch company provided $800 million of preferred equity.

The acquisition also gives the billionaire Koch brothers, who agreed to support Meredith's offer with an equity injection of US$650 million, a foothold in the struggling magazine industry.

"We are creating a premier media company serving almost 200 million American consumers across industry-leading digital, television, print, video, mobile, and social platforms positioned for growth", said Meredith Corporation Chairman and CEO Stephen M. Lacy. CEO and President Rich Battista said in a statement.

Time has been reeling under the same pressures facing the rest of the magazine industry.

Time chairman John Fahey said the sale was in the best interests of the company and its shareholders, noting the price represented a 46% premium to the closing price of shares on 15 November, the day prior to media reports about the deal. On Friday, Time shares closed at $16.90.

Though Time was reported in October to be considering cost-cutting moves, including reducing publication schedules for some of its titles, it still has clout. Time magazine responded on its own account that Trump didn't understand the selection process and several comics offered their own mocking tweets as well.

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