MediaFile

Slim chance for New York Times Co.

September 11, 2008

slim.jpg

Few investors are interested in newspapers these days — except for the super rich.

Carlos Slim, who Forbes lists as the world’s second-richest man, has picked up a 6.4 percent stake in The New York Times Co.

Asked by Reuters why he bought a stake in the publishing company that owns The New York Times, Boston Globe and other assets, Slim said “It’s financial.” The suggestion there is that he is not making a strategic move into U.S. media.

That could well be the case given the super depressed share price of the Times. As paidContent put it, shares of the Times have been “dropping from $40-plus three years ago to the cost of a discount DVD today.”

If Slim does have a purely financial interest, well, perhaps that’s all the worse for shareholders. Media observers are quick to point out that there isn’t much fundamentally on the horizon that’s going to boost newspaper stocks, so maybe a good old-fashioned ego buy is the best hope for investors. 

Keep an eye on:

  • Deutsche Telekom’s T-Mobile unit is set to start selling a mobile phone based on Google’s Android software within weeks (Reuters
  • Nike recently launched a new ad campaign in Europe, testing the catchphrase “Here I am” (WSJ.com)
  • A number of media executives have indicated this week that TV advertising sales are weathering the current economic storm better than media categories like radio and publishing, and perhaps even the Internet (Reuters)

(Photo: Carlos Slim/REUTERS)

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