Thai busi­ness­man buys For­tune for $150M

The Wichita Eagle - - Business - BY CHRISTINE HAUSER

Mered­ith Corp. will sell For­tune mag­a­zine to a Thai busi­ness­man for $150 mil­lion, the com­pany said, as it con­tin­ues to of­fload some of the sto­ried brands it ac­quired with its pur­chase of Time Inc. last year.

The deal comes al­most two months af­ter Mered­ith said it would sell Time mag­a­zine to bil­lion­aire Marc Be­nioff for about $190 mil­lion.

Chatchaval Jiar­a­vanon, a board mem­ber of Charoen Pokp­hand, a Thai con­glom­er­ate, will own For­tune as a per­sonal in­vest­ment, ac­cord­ing to a state­ment from Mered­ith. He in­tends to ex­pand in­vest­ment in For­tune’s dig­i­tal ca­pa­bil­i­ties, geo­graphic ex­pan­sion and ed­i­to­rial tal­ent, the state­ment said.

“Our vi­sion is to es­tab­lish For­tune as the world’s lead­ing busi­ness me­dia brand, with an al­ways-on reach and global rel­e­vance,” he said. “The de­mand for high-qual­ity busi­ness in­for­ma­tion is grow­ing, and with fur­ther com­mit­ted in­vest­ment in tech­nol­ogy and bril­liant jour­nal­ism, we be­lieve the out­look for fur­ther prof­itable growth is ex­cel­lent both for the pub­li­ca­tion and the events busi­ness.”

Mered­ith had an­nounced in March of this year that it was seek­ing a buyer for For­tune, as well as other for­mer Time Inc. ti­tles, in­clud­ing Money and Sports Il­lus­trated. The de­ci­sion to sell Time, Sports Il­lus­trated, For­tune and Money was widely ex­pected at the time, but it fur­ther sig­naled the de­cline of the mag­a­zine in­dus­try.

The com­pany ac­quired For­tune with its $2.8 bil­lion ac­qui­si­tion of Time Inc. last Novem­ber, in a deal that made it the largest mag­a­zine pub­lisher in the United States.

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