Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The New York Times

Bradley Johnson and Nat Ives have made the case,in ADVERTISING AGE, that the New York Times Co. will still be in business, and the Sulzbergers will still be in control there, through at least 2012.

One fact this story provides of which I was not aware -- Arthur Sulzberger's son, A.G. Sulzberger, is now a reporter at the metro desk. Presumably "learning the ropes" as heir to the throne, which is what is father was doing when his grandfather was in charged. Johnson and Ives think the Kingdom will still be intact for AG to inherit.

This is less gloomy (unless you are routing for their failure, in which case it is more gloomy) than many other assessments. Indeed, Johnson & Ives begin their story by mentioning a recent claim in The Atlantic that the publishing company could go under by or during the month of May 2009. That month, of course, has come and gone -- and so now has its successor.

The gist of it seems to be the Regional Newspaper Group that the comapny owns. Many of the papers in that group still have double-digit profit margins. Although the NYT Co. has a cash crunch coming n 2011, when it have to repay its borrowings against a revolving credit facility, it could if necessary sell those valuable assets to raise that cash and keep the core of its business, the flagship paper, intact for AG.

For those of you who enjoy the sound of the crunching of numbers, here's the link.

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