Friday, November 21, 1997

11/21/97: Primedia, McClatchy, John Wiley, Dow Jones

Mcclatchy Purchases Cowles Media Company
Primedia (Kiii) Acquires Publisher
Wiley And Dow Jones Form Publishing Alliance
Dow Jones To Ax 400 Workers
Don’t You Wish Your Last Name Were Murdoch?
Macromedia Purchases New Jersey Newspapers
Dow Jones Board Votes To Sell Markets Unit
Springer Chairman Plans To Step Down
Dow Jones To Acquire Rest Of IDD Enterprises L.P


MCCLATCHY PURCHASES COWLES MEDIA COMPANY (Inadvertently left out last week)

McClatchy Newspapers, Inc. (NYSE: MNI) and Cowles Media Company (CMC), announced today an agreement for McClatchy to acquire Cowles, publisher of the Star Tribune in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis/St. Paul, in a transaction valued at $1.4 billion, including the assumption of approximately $90 million in existing Cowles debt. The merger creates the eighth-largest newspaper company in the nation based on daily and Sunday circulation.

The Star Tribune is the leading newspaper in Minnesota with circulation of 387,000 daily and 673,000 on Sunday. It ranks as the 16th largest daily and the 12th largest Sunday newspaper in the country. The Star Tribune's daily circulation is nearly twice that of its primary competitor in the Twin Cities market, the 15th largest in the country. On Sunday, its circulation is two and one half times larger than its competitor and its penetration is the highest among two-paper markets in the United States.

In addition to the Star Tribune, Cowles operates three other business units which McClatchy expects to sell as soon as possible, using the proceeds to reduce debt. The other business units are: Cowles Business Media, Inc., a publisher of specialized business magazines and information services; Cowles Enthusiast Media, Inc., a publisher of 27 special-interest consumer magazines and related books and products; and Cowles Creative Publishing, Inc., a specialty publisher, distributor and direct marketer of books, videos and interactive media for the home arts, home improvement and outdoor markets.

McClatchy Newspapers, Inc., headquartered in Sacramento, California, currently publishes 10 daily and 13 non-daily newspapers located in western coastal states and North and South Carolina. The company reported 1996 revenues of $624 million and had daily circulation of 972,600 and Sunday circulation of 1,175,100. McClatchy's newspapers include, among others, The Sacramento Bee, The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), The Fresno (CA) Bee, The News Tribune (Tacoma, WA) and the Anchorage Daily News. McClatchy also owns and operates other media-related businesses, including, a national online publishing operation and The Newspaper Network, a national newspaper marketing company.


Primedia Inc., formerly K-III Communications said that its technical and trade division, Interec Publishing, has acquired Cardinal Business Media, whose magazines include Mix, which covers the professional recording industry; Electronic Musician, which covers computer-generated music production; and Recording Industry Sourcebook, a music industry directory. Also included in the deal are Cardinal's Club Industry News and its related trade shows for owners and operators of commercial health and fitness facilities. Excluding the latest acquisitions, Overland Park, KS-based Interec publishes 17 entertainment and business communications titles including Pool and Spa News, Broadcast Engineering, Millimeter, Video Systems and Telephony. Interec also puts on trade shows. In total, Interec, one of the largest trade publishers in the U.S., publishes 72 magazines, supplements, newsletters and show dailies throughout the world.

Bonnie Lieberman, Senior Vice President and General Manager of the College Division of John Wiley & Sons, Inc. today announced an agreement with Dow Jones Interactive Publishing, a division of Dow Jones & Company, to develop the Wiley Business Extra program, featuring content from Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition, as part of Wiley's print and online college-level business textbook offerings. The Wiley Business Extra program is being created to enhance the student learning experience and offer professors a new level of support resources to strengthen the business curriculum. "We're very excited to be working with Dow Jones to further our long-standing strategic objective to help students to learn and teachers to teach. The Wiley Business Extra program does this by offering students greater insight into their studies through access to Dow Jones publications and articles, including The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition, and by providing pedagogical tools to help them understand how to use this wealth of information," said Ms. Lieberman.

Wiley Business Extra will deliver the full-text of a selected number of Dow Jones stories, focusing on the topic, industry, or special area of interest relevant to the Wiley textbooks. Dow Jones will scan The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition and other Dow Jones newswires for stories that match a profile established for the Wiley texts. Stories matching the profile will then be posted on the Business Extra electronic news folder hosted at Wiley's Web site,, along with discussion questions for classroom assignments. Divided into sub-sections, the folder will contain a separate area for each text associated with the program. Wiley will publish a paperback book called The On-Line Business Survival Guide that shows students how to use The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition, research business problems on the Web, and use the news folder. The customized guide will be available for purchase as a stand-alone or as a supplement to nine Wiley finance accounting, management, and information management textbooks.
(John Wiley)

Serious Losses at Financial Info Unit As many as 400 workers will be cut from the 4,000-strong staff of Dow Jones Markets, the financial information division of Dow Jones & Co., previously known as Telerate. Reports issued today indicated that Dow Jones & Co., publisher of the Wall Street Journal, would also be announcing its first annual loss since it went public in 1963. That loss is predicted to be as high as $600 million. Dow Jones Market delivers breaking business news and financial information to investors and financial analysts through a proprietary desk terminal network. Reuters and Bloomberg provide competing services. Wall Street analysts had previously speculated that Dow Jones would sell the troubled financial information unit. Today the publishing company said it was reviewing the struggling unit's operations and studying alternative strategies. (See Below)

News America Publishing Group has announced the formation of News America Digital Publishing. The new division will consolidate the Group’s electronic publishing operations, including the TV Guide Entertainment Network (TVGEN); Fox News On-line; Fox Sports On-line; News Internet Services, an internet solutions provider; Kesmai, a multi-player games company; and the Advanced Media Group which focuses on business development and strategic planning. The announcement was made today by Anthea Disney, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of News America Publishing Group, a division of News Corporation. James Murdoch, formerly News Corporation Vice-President for New Media, has been named President of News America Digital Publishing, reporting to Disney.
(News Corp)

Macromedia Inc., parent company of The Record, is purchasing the daily North Jersey Herald & News and 11 weekly newspapers that serve parts of five New Jersey counties. Jonathan Markey, president of the Hackensack-based Record, said Thursday that the Herald & News and the group of weeklies would continue to operate independently, although some administrative functions of the two daily papers may be combined in the future. "We plan to continue to operate the newspaper as the Herald & News, hopefully forever and certainly for as long as it works as expected and continues to provide value," Markey said.

In August, the media giant Gannett Co. announced that it would purchase the Asbury Park Press and the Home News & Tribune. All the papers being purchased by Macromedia are part of North Jersey Newspapers Co., a subsidiary of William Dean Singleton's Denver-based Media News Group. Ten other weeklies operated by North Jersey Newspapers Co. in Union and Warren counties will be kept by Media News. Markey would not disclose the price of the purchase. A newspaper industry analyst, however, estimated the price at $40 million to $50 million, although the total may be lower because the deal does not include real estate or the Herald & News' out-of-date presses.

John Morton, president of a Maryland consulting firm that analyzes media companies, said it is no surprise that Singleton was willing to part with the Herald & News. Singleton's sale of North Jersey Newspapers comes just weeks after Garden State Newspapers, another of his companies, announced that it would purchase the Press-Telegram of Long Beach, Calif., from Knight-Ridder Inc. "He's trying to `cluster' his papers, and if this is the last one in northern New Jersey, I suspect it's something he was planning to sell for some time," Morton said. Morton said that if the Herald & News were the only paper in its market, it might fetch as much as $1,400 per reader, or roughly $75 million. Because the North Jersey market is a competitive one, however, the purchase price most likely is considerably smaller.
Received via NewsEDGE from Desktop Data, Inc.: 11/21/97 03:37:2

Dow Jones & Co.'s (DJ) board voted Thursday to put its Dow Jones Markets unit up for sale, The New York Times reported Friday, citing a person close to Dow Jones. On Wednesday, the company said Dow Jones Markets will focus on competitive strengths in content and its workstation product line, while continuing to examine all alternatives. The company also said it will cut the unit's staff by 200 to 300 by early 1998, while scaling back the investment program for Dow Jones Markets. Dow Jones added that it plans a "sizable" fourth-quarter charge, reflecting a write-down of goodwill, severance and other costs. According to the Times, the person close to Dow Jones said an analysis of Dow Jones Markets is expected to be prepared and completed in about three weeks and will then be available to prospective buyers. The Times said possible buyers include Bloomberg LP (X.BBG); Reuters Holdings PLC (RTRSY); Thomson Corp. (T.TOC); and Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe, the investment company that owns Bridge News.
Received via NewsEDGE from Desktop Data, Inc.: 11/21/97 02:28:35

Axel Springer Verlag AG Chairman Juergen Richter will step down from his position at the end of the year, the company said. The German media group said that "after events of the last few weeks and publicized disparagements against (Richter), continuation of his contract cannot occur." Mr. Richter will continue performing all functions of chairman until Dec. 31, Springer said. In recent weeks, various German newspapers have speculated that Mr. Richter would be asked to step down, due to disagreements over his management style. Springer didn't say who would replace Mr. Richter, and company officials weren't immediately available to comment.

Axel Springer Verlag AG is a major German publishing and broadcasting group. Its principal operations are in newspapers, including the country's top-circulation tabloid "Bild" and daily newspaper "Die Welt." Springer also has magazine and television operations.
Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc.

Dow Jones & Co. said it plans to acquire the roughly 30% it doesn't already own of IDD Enterprises L.P. and sell parts of the financial-publishing, software and on-line services concern. Terms weren't disclosed. Dow Jones said it also plans to restructure IDD as part of a continuing program to shed noncore businesses. Under the restructuring plan, Dow Jones said it sold IDD's publishing operations, including magazines Investment Dealer's Digest and Mergers & Acquisitions Journal, to Securities Data Publishing, a unit of Thomson Corp. Dow Jones said it agreed to sell IDD's retail investment-services operations to a management group led by Leonard W. Hirschfeld, currently senior vice president with IDD. Mr. Hirschfeld will leave IDD to head the new business. The major remaining IDD asset to be kept by Dow Jones is Tradeline, a market information database used by investment banks and financial-services and information companies. In addition to IDD, Dow Jones publishes The Wall Street Journal, The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition, Barron's magazine, electronic business information services including Dow Jones Markets and the Dow Jones Newswires, and the Ottaway group of community newspapers. Dow Jones also produces business television programming.
Copyright (c) 1997 Dow Jones and Company, Inc.

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