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NYT says selling Boston Globe is not imperative after finances improve

NYT says selling Boston Globe is not imperative after finances improve
Chanting for solidarity: In this April 24, 2009 file photo, employees of the Boston Globe display signs and chant at a rally held to help save the paper in Boston. Employees of newspaper enlisted public support to save their newspaper, calling it a city institution and demanding that the New York Times Co, share in cost cutting measures.

The New York Times Company still intends to sell the Boston Globe, but the newspaper's finances have improved enough that the company does not need to sell it, the New York Times daily reported after top executives met Globe employees first time Wednesday since the company threatened to close the paper.

Arthur Sulzberger Jr, the company chairman, and Janet L Robinson, the president and chief executive, said that if they selected a buyer, it would be based not only on price, but also on how the new owner would treat the Globe.

The NYT report said: [Link]

The two sessions, each an hour long with hundreds of employees at The Globe’s headquarters, was closed to outside journalists but was described by several people present — including some who spoke on the record and some who took notes — who gave nearly identical accounts.

On Wednesday, the company executives thanked employees for their sacrifices and Mr. Sulzberger said that as a result, “our hand is not being forced. We are not in a situation where we must absolutely sell.” But the executives would not say how much the paper was still losing, or whether it was now in the black.

That drew a sharp comment from Brian Mooney, a reporter who was one of the most vocal opponents of the proposals put before the guild. He said the company had repeatedly fallen back on vague statements rather than providing hard numbers that would let employees make informed judgments.

After the session, Mr. Mooney said, “There’s been a lot of damage done, and I don’t think these kinds of meetings make a difference.”

Bloomberg also reported on the situation: [Link]

Robinson told Globe workers today at a staff meeting that pay cuts and other savings have put the newspaper on stronger financial footing, according to an employee who attended the gathering. The newspaper has cut jobs, wages, benefits and trimmed sections as ad sales plunge. Robinson’s comments were confirmed by Abbe Serphos, a Times Co. spokeswoman.

Times Co. has been seeking to sell the Globe along with the rest of its New England Media Group, which also includes the Telegram & Gazette of Worcester, Massachusetts. The publisher threatened to close the Globe in April if unions hadn’t agreed to $20 million in cost cuts, according to the Newspaper Guild.

“Our hand is not forced in regard to selling the Globe,” the employee quoted Robinson as saying. “We are now in a situation where a sale is not the only thing that can happen.” The employee, a union member, declined to be identified because the meeting wasn’t public.

Date posted: September 10, 2009 Last modified: May 23, 2018 Total views: 292