Published: Fri, November 17, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Koch Brothers Backing Meredith's New Bid for Time Inc

Koch Brothers Backing Meredith's New Bid for Time Inc

Time Inc.'s stock price jumped 24 percent to over $15.60 a share in midday trading, following a report on Wednesday night that the company is in talks to sell itself to Meredith a deal backed by Charles and David Koch.

The New York Times cited unnamed sources to say the Koch brothers have tentatively agreed to provide more than $500 million in equity on Meredith's behalf. Aside from its namesake magazine, it also owns brands like Sports Illustrated and Fortune.

The billionaire libertarian Koch Brothers, whose company is based in Wichita, Kan., are known for supporting conservative causes, as well as philanthropic donations to civic and arts organizations.

An email to the billionaire brothers' business, Koch Industries Inc.

"It is not clear how much influence - if any - the Kochs would have on a Meredith-owned Time Inc. if the deal were to go through", The Times reported.

Shares of Time, Inc.

This would be the third time Meredith has attempted to acquire Time since 2013.

Once part of Time Warner Inc., Time Inc. was spun out as a separate unit in 2014 after talks to merge the division with Meredith collapsed, a move that skyrocketed debt to $1.37 billion from $38 million and spurred concern that a narrower focus on magazines would hinder growth prospects.

Des Moines-based Meredith also owns 17 television stations, according to USA Today.

Instead, the publisher made cost cuts by selling its non-core assets, and announced it was exploring the sale of Coastal Living, Sunset and Golf, and a majority stake in Essence.

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